McLellan Poetry Competition 2023

The 2023 McLellan Poetry Competition, run from the Isle of Arran, is now open for entries.

The closing date for this year’s competition is midnight, Monday 10th July 2023.

The McLellan Poetry Prize is awarded by the Arran Theatre and Arts Trust as part of the annual McLellan Arts Festival.
Now in its seventeenth year, past judges have included Kathleen Jamie, Robert Crawford, Jackie Kay, Peter and Ann Sansom, Michael Laskey, Simon Armitage, David Constantine, Maura Dooley, Sinéad Morrissey, Sean O’Brien , Luke Wright and Hollie McNish.

The Arran Theatre and Arts Trust write:

This year we are running two separate competitions:

Joelle Taylor

• the main competition in the English language
• a second competition for the best poems in the Scots language

The judge this year for the English language Competition is Joelle Taylor. For more about Joelle and her work see her website

A first Prize of £1,000 is offered with a second prize of £300, a third prize of £100 and five commended poems prizes of £25 each. Winners will be invited to come and read with Joelle Taylor on the Isle of Arran on Saturday 26th August 2023.


The judge for the Scots poems is Hugh McMillan, and offers a first prize of £400 and a second prize of £100. See more about Hugh and his writing here

Hugh McMillan

The winning poets in the Scots competition will be invited to come and read with Hugh McMillan on Arran on Friday 25th August as part of the McLellan Arts Festival’s Scottish Poetry night, in which we shall be celebrating the work of the Arran poet Robert McLellan, in whose memory the Festival and the Poetry Competition was set up.

The competition is open to anyone – to find out more and enter the competition follow this link 

Please review the Competition Rules before submitting your poem(s).

For more information see the Arran Theatre and Arts Trust competition webpage

Featured image shows a painting of Arran by Nicky Gill