BRIDPORT’S creative writing competition will be broadcasting its award ceremony for the first time ever this year – and everyone is invited.

The ceremony for the Bridport Prize – one of the most prestigious open writing competitions – will take place at 6pm today (Thursday).

The annual ceremony traditionally takes place at the Bridport Arts Centre and is strictly invitation only. However, due to the pandemic, this year’s ceremony has had to go online.

The award has helped launch the career of a number of famous writers, including Kate Atkinson and Kit de Waal.

Kate Wilson, Programme Manager of the Bridport Prize, said: “Our awards are such a happy celebration with winners coming from all over the world and we had to think hard about how to make this year’s ceremony just as memorable.”

“We turned to local filmmaker, Justin Owen to help us put together an online event to celebrate Bridport and our winners. We hope the whole town will watch.”

This year’s ceremony promises to be a must watch for writing aficionados. It features Emma Healey, author of Elizabeth, Mimi Khalvati, the founder of The Poetry School and the first woman to have a play commissioned by London’s Globe Theatre, Nell Leyshon.

The ceremony will also include a film created by Justin Owen, taking a closer look at the award winners and their writing. It includes industry speakers Euan Thorneycroft, from London Literary Agency AM Heath, and Aki Schiltz from the Literary Consultancy.

The Bridport Prize writing competition began in 1973 as an idea by the late Peggy Chapman-Andrews to help fund the newly established Arts Centre.

The writing categories were expanded to include a novel award in Peggy’s honour after her death in 2013. The competition attracted entries from 82 countries and is seen as one of the most prestigious writing prizes in the literary world.

Next year’s competition begins from the end of the awards ceremony and the deadline for all short stories, poems, flash fiction and novels is May 31 2021.

The link to the awards evening will be posted on or email