Mist and Mountain Creative Residency, in collaboration with Gerard Rochford’s Literary Executors, are delighted to launch The Gerard Rochford Poetry Prize 2021. 

Writers are invited to submit an original poem in English on the theme of ‘Family’ to gerardrochfordpoetry@mail.com before the competition closing date of 30 June 2021. 

The winning poet and two runners up will be announced on Sunday 1 September 2021 with the publication of their winning entries on the Mist and Mountain Creative Residency website and Gerard Rochford Poetry page.

The winner will receive a large, bespoke commemorative plate, courtesy of Campbeltown Pottery, featuring an excerpt of Gerard Rochford’s poetry and £150.

Two runners ups will each receive a small, bespoke commemorative plate and £50.


ENTRY RULES:

1. The Gerard Rochford Poetry Prize 2021 is an international poetry competition open to any writer over the age of 18.

2. Entry is FREE but limited to one poem per individual entrant. 

3. The theme for the competition is ‘Family’.

4. All entries must be in English.

5. Poems can be any length up to a maximum of 40 lines.

6. Poems must be titled and entirely the original, unpublished work of the entrant.

7. Submissions must be entered under the entrant’s real name.

8. No relatives of the Gerard Rochford Prize 2021 judging committee are eligible to enter this competition.

9. Copyright of all poems remains with the entrants but the winning three poets hereby grant the competition organisers the right to publish their winning entries online.

10. The closing date for entries is midnight (UK time) Wednesday 30 June 2021.

11. Mist and Mountain Creative Residency and Gerard Rochford’s Literary Executors will shortlist entries for final judging.

12. Dr Wayne Price, Senior Lecturer in English Literature and Creative Writing at the University of Aberdeen will select the winner and runners up from the shortlist. 

13. The judges’ decision is final and competition organisers are unable to comment on individual entries.

14. The winner and runners up will be announced on Sunday 1 September 2021 and see their poems published on the Mist and Mountain Creative Residency website and the Gerard Rochford Poetry page. 

16. First Prize is £150 and a large, bespoke commemorative plate, courtesy of Campbeltown Pottery, featuring an excerpt of Gerard Rochford’s poetry. 

17. Two runners up will each receive £50 and a small, bespoke commemorative plate, courtesy of Campbeltown Pottery, featuring an excerpt of Gerard Rochford’s poetry. 

18. All entries – including the author’s real name and contact details – must be submitted electronically via the following email address:

gerardrochfordpoetry@mail.com

We look forward to reading your submissions.

Thank you.


Gerard Rochford – Biography

Gerard Rochford (17 December 1932 – 18 December 2019) was brought up in Worcestershire, England, educated at Hull and Oxford Universities but lived most of his life in Aberdeen, Scotland. 

A distinguished professor and psychotherapist, poetry was a lifetime’s vocation. Gerard’s poetry was widely published throughout his lifetime; from student newspapers to influential online magazines and many of his own chapbooks and collections. His extensive writings explored human relationships, wildlife and politics. ‘Perhaps they are all one’, he said.

At the heart of Aberdeen’s vibrant poetry scene, Gerard was the co-founder and leading light of the city’s poetry group which still thrives today, holding monthly poetry evenings at arts café, Books and Beans.  Gerard was highly respected in the group, not only for the quality of his own work, but for his generosity of spirit and time, mentoring, editing and championing the work of nascent poets.  A regular visitor to Canada, he established himself as a transatlantic poet and became an important and active part of the poetry scene in Victoria.

As Makar for the respected online magazine Scottish Review, Gerard submitted a poem every month for over five years. His poem My Father’s Hand was chosen by the Scottish Poetry Library as one of the best poems of 2006. 

Gerard lived in the west end of Aberdeen from 1963 until he died in 2019. Well travelled and well read, he had an exceptionally broad hinterland to draw inspiration from for his work. Poetry was a lifetime labour of love but as father of ten children with his Anglo-Indian wife Anne (d.1991), Gerard’s greatest joy was his family.

Select Publications

DNA – Poems for a Family – foreword by Morelle Smith.

Cairn – Poems for the Isle of Lewis – foreword by Robert Macfarlane.

Failing Light – handcrafted limited edition from the same handpress used by Ted Hughes.

Of Love and Water – a collaboration with Canadian artist David Ladmore.

Morning Crossword – a collaboration with Scottish artist Ester Green.