POETS from around the world are being invited to enter an annual celebration of poets and poems in Scotland’s three indigenous languages.

The organisers of the Wigtown Poetry Prize have also revealed the list of judges for this year’s competition. It will have its award ceremony at Wigtown Book Festival, which runs from September 22 to October 1.

Entries for the £1500 prize and £200 runners-up award can be submitted in English, Scots or Gaelic but there are also other categories specifically for Scots and Scottish Gaelic.

The Alastair Reid Pamphlet Prize recognises a collection of work rather than individual poems and the Fresh Voices Award is for poets living in, or from, Dumfries and Galloway who have never professionally published a full-length collection.

The 2023 judges are: Wigtown Poetry Prize and Alastair Reid Pamphlet Prize – Donald S Murray, author and poet; Scots prize – Lennie Pennie, Scots language poet; Gaidhlig prize – Gaelic poet Rody Gorman; Fresh Voices Award – Susi Briggs, author, poet, storyteller and musician.

Wigtown Poetry Prize Group chair Nicholas Walker (pictured) said: “The Wigtown Poetry Prize has a worldwide reputation as the champion of poetry in Scotland’s three indigenous languages.

“That’s re-inforced by the quality of the entries, the excellence of our judges and the fabulous support we receive from organisations and individuals dedicated to Scotland, to promoting poetry and to strengthening our languages.

“As one of the UK’s best-established competitions, it has been the launchpad for many successful careers.

“This year we are once again looking forward to celebrating the skill, imagination and insight of writers from Scotland and all around the globe.”

The Prize is organised by the Wigtown Festival Company in association with The Gaelic Books Council, Moniack Mhor Writers’ Centre, Saltire Society, Scottish Poetry Library and StAnza, Scotland’s international poetry festival.

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Gaelic Books Council director Alison Lang (pictured) said: “Tha an fharpais seo a’ toirt cothrom air leth do sgrìobhadairean bàrdachd, agus tha cliù na duais seo air togail a thoirt do bhàird aig diofar ìrean sna dreuchdan aca. Tha sinn moiteil a bhith a’ toirt taic don dhuais Ghàidhlig a-rithist, agus tha sinn an dòchas gun cluinn sinn guthan ùra inntinneach am-bliadhna.”

Sarah Mason, executive director of the Saltire Society, added: “The Saltire Society is pleased to be sponsoring the Wigtown Scots Poetry Competition in 2023. The strength and importance of Scotland’s languages is at the heart of Scottish culture and identities.

“Through prizes and projects such as this, we are ensuring our languages and the works in our languages are recognised and continue to flourish.

“It is fantastic to see Scots language poet Lennie Pennie as the Scots poetry judge this year and we are looking forward to seeing what new works the 2023 prize shines a licht on.

“Wigtown Book Festival has worked hard to ensure these prizes continued, even during the toughest or times and we are grateful to them for their hard work.”

A winner of one or more categories in this year’s competition will be selected at the discretion of StAnza, Scotland’s International Poetry Festival and Wigtown Festival Company to read at its 2024 event.

The competition is open for entries until May 31 and details can be found at www.wigtownpoetryprize.com