20 June 2024

Budding bards invited to Humber Bridge poetry contest

Budding bards are being invited to enter a contest to find the best short poem inspired by the Humber Bridge.

Entries to the competition, which is being run by the Humber Bridge Board in partnership with the University of Hull, can be no longer than 60 words and must be submitted by midnight on Wednesday, September 13.

The winner will be announced on National Poetry Day (October 5) and will receive a host
of prizes including a trip up the Humber Bridge towers for two, having a recording of their poem featured on the Humber Bridge website, and having it set to music and accessible to bridge visitors via a QR code.

Runners-up will also have their poems featured on the Humber Bridge website.

Fay Baker, deputy chief operating officer at the Humber Bridge, said the competition had been inspired by the love and pride many local people feel for the Grade I listed structure.

The bridge is the subject of countless photographs, Fay added, but its magnitude and majesty was less often captured in words and this was what the competition was challenging people to do.

She said: “Thousands of people visit the bridge for leisure and exercise, or simply to share time with their loved ones, and we know what a special place it has in their hearts.

“It is also the backdrop to so many peoples’ memories, either of childhood or of visiting with their own children, or of tales of family members who worked on the construction of the bridge.

“For others, it is the first sight of home when the towers come into view after a long journey.

“In this competition, we’re asking people to capture these emotions and memories in words. The poems don’t have to be directly about the bridge – although they can be – but they must reference the bridge in some way to be in with a chance of winning.”

The poems will be judged by an expert panel from the University of Hull’s creative writing team, consisting of Dr Ed Hurst, Kath McKay and Anna Turner.

Dr Hurst said he and his fellow judges were very much looking forward to reading the entries.

“It is going to be fascinating to see the works that emerge,” he added.

“We’re all very excited for the judging to get under way.”

The competition is open to people aged 18 and over and entries must be typed up and uploaded to the Humber Bridge website by midnight on Wednesday, September 13.

Fay added that the competition was open to all, not just seasoned wordsmiths.

“You don’t have to be a budding Tennyson or Keats to take part,” she said.

“The judges will be looking for how the poems fit the brief of being related to the bridge as much as they are technical writing ability. So, get those creative juices flowing.”

To find out more about the competition, or enter, or to read the terms and conditions, visit humberbridge.co.uk/poetry-competition.