Note: the deadline for entries has now been extended to 8th May, 2020.

Tunbridge Wells Friends of the Earth is running an open poetry competition to mark the 50th anniversary of Earth Day on 22nd April and is inviting entries from anybody who lives, works, or attends school, within the Royal Borough of Tunbridge Wells.

The broad theme is the Environment: Climate Change and Climate Action, for the wellbeing of the planet, and whatever this might inspire at the current time. 

You may also wish to consider the theme for World Environment Day, which is ‘celebrating biodiversity’.  

The climate and nature emergency affects all of us in different ways and demands collective and individual lifestyle changes. Our notion of who we are and how we think, is inextricably linked to the health of the planet and our collective unconscious. We are affected, to different extents, by what we know and understand about our global impact on the Earth and all its inhabitants.

“This writing competition is an opportunity for the people of Tunbridge Wells to express creatively, their ideas, and anxieties, about the climate crisis and state of the Earth. It’s time to share your voice!” says, Steve Walter, Making Connections Matter.

The winners, and those who are shortlisted, will now be invited to read their work on World Environment Day, on Friday 5th June 2020, at an evening in the Trinity Gallery, Tunbridge Wells. There is a £25 prize for the winner.


There is no charge for entry, but a donation to Tunbridge Wells, Friends of the Earth, is kindly invited (£2 per entry as a guide, but this is not compulsory – contact the group for further information on Please note, everyone involved with the competition is giving their help freely.

Entries should be the author’s own work, and may have been previously published (if this is the case, the place of publication should be cited).

Poems should be no longer than 50 lines. Prose entries will also be accepted, but should not exceed 500 words. No more than two entries per person, please.

Please send your entry by email to The Competition Organiser, Steve Walter, at and give the title of your poem, or prose, as well as your name in the email, but not on the entry itself.

The deadline for entries has been extended to midnight on Friday 8th May, 2020.

The entries will be judged by poets Abegail Morley, Jill Munro (and Steve Walter). No alterations can be made once submitted… Happy writing!



The theme for World Environment Day this year is celebrating biodiversity.

Earth Day is celebrated on the 22ndApril every year. 2020 is the fiftieth anniversary year. For more information visit:

For information on climate action in the UK, visit:

During the day, Tunbridge Wells Friends of the Earth will be organizing a Big Clear Up.

Steve Walter is a local author and poet, with a pamphlet published by Indigo Dreams, When the Change Came. He has been published in The Literary Review, Poetry South-East 2000 and Acumen, as well as The Kent and Sussex Poetry Society Folio collections. He has written a long environmental poem, Gaia 2020, published by Making Connections Matter.

The prize money has been donated by Making Connections Matter.


See the article in the Times of Tunbridge Wells 19th February 2020

Revised deadline – Earth Day 2020 – Tunbridge Wells Friends of the Earth Poetry & Prose Competition