Award-winning Welsh poet and author Mike Jenkins judged our 2021 competition.

Mike Jenkins has been widely published and is much in demand for his lively performances and writing workshops. He has performed at the Hay Festival, the Aldeburgh Poetry Festival and has read and tutored at Ty Newydd, the National Writers’ Centre for Wales.

He has won Wales Book of the Year in 1998 for his collection of short stories ‘Wanting to Belong’. He has also won an Eric Gregory Award from the Society of Authors, The Young Writers Prize from the Welsh Arts Council for ‘Empire of Smoke’ and the John Tripp Award for Spoken Poetry.

Mike is at the forefront of contemporary Welsh writing and is a fellow of the Academi, the Welsh Society for Authors. He is a former editor of Poetry Wales magazine and has co-edited Red Poets for 25+ years, an annual magazine of left-wing poetry from Wales and beyond. He has previously judged the International Welsh Poetry Competition, in 2009 and 2019.

Poetry forms the bulk of Mike’s published work, though he has also written three novellas for young people and one for adults. His book ‘From Aberfan t Grenfell’ (Cultural Matters) was a collaboration with artist Alan Perry.

In March 2021, Mike published a new poetry collection, Anonymous Bosch (Culture Matters) with photographs by Dave Lewis.

Mike is a retired teacher of English and his last job was at Radyr Comprehensive School, Cardiff. He previously taught at Pen-y-dre High School in Merthyr for 20 years.

Mike frequently appears on radio and television and is known among Cardiff City football fans as the club’s unofficial poet.

Visit Mike’s website to find out more:

We hope to announce our 2022 judge by Christmas.