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This year's winners were:

Children's Literature:

Highly commended: Janys Chambers for Lockdown 2041

Winner: Chris Nelson for New Backgrounds


Highly commended: Maria Isakova-Bennett for Equinox, 2020

Winner: Paul Howarth for Residue

Short stories: 

Highly commended: Esther Amis-Hughes for Relative Humidity

Winner: Leon Coleman for A Rock Called Pluto


Highly commended: Julie McKiernan for I am Stars

Winner: Caitlin Norbury for Home Sweet Home

The next competition will launch in November 2021 and will again be open to all four categories. The theme this year will be sustainability. More information will be posted here in due course.

Enquiries about eligibility, or to be added to the mailing list to be notified about the new competition, should be directed to:

Jenni Davies

Tel: 01244 511344


Twitter: @cheshireprize


History of the Prize

The Cheshire Prize for Literature was founded in 2003 by the then High Sheriff, John Richards OBE DL, and Dr Bill Hughes from the University of Chester. It is open to people with a connection to the historic Cheshire boundary (including Wirral). It is one of the few free-to-enter literary competitions and offers not only a significant cash prize for the winner but also the rare opportunity for the best entries from the previous year to be published professionally by the University of Chester Press in an anthology edited by a senior member of academic staff.

Traditionally operating on a triennial cycle of short stories, poetry and children’s literature, in 2019 a new category for scriptwriting was introduced. The University was delighted to form a partnership with Storyhouse, which forms such an important new part of the cultural offering in Cheshire.