MEDIA INFORMATION: Beyond The Storm Poetry Competition in support of NHS Charities Together COVID-19 Urgent Appeal

embedded image from entry 101964

The following information is provided as supporting details for any articles, blogs and associated content that may be produced in support of The Big Write Out Loud Poetry Competition: Beyond The Storm.


  • 'Beyond The Storm - The Write Out Loud poetry competition' in aid of the NHS Charities’ Covid-19 appeal
    • 7th May – 8th August
    • Theme is ‘Beyond The Storm
    • An on-line poetry competition for established & budding UK poets;
    • Judged by a panel of poets headed by the award winning poet Andrew McMillan
    • Winning & Selected poems recorded by Casualty actors and put to Public vote for a special ‘People’s Choice’ award
    • Anthology of selected competition entries is planned to create a poetic record of the pandemic era
  • Beyond The Storm - The Write Out Loud poetry competition – Why?
    • Encourage a poetic response to life under lockdown
    • Create a poetic record of the pandemic era
    • Raise money and awareness for the frontline NHS
  • Beyond The Storm - The Write Out Loud poetry competition - How will the competition help the NHS?
    • Donations are optional but encouraged;
      • Entrants on submission
      • Public when voting
      • Viewers when watching/on-line
      • Beyond The Storm anthology sales post competition
  • The Big Write Out Loud Poetry competition - Key Dates
    • May 7th - Launch
    • June 19th - Entries Close Date
    • July 10th – Judging completed by Andrew McMillan & team
      • Placed as (but not yet announced);
      • Competition Winners 1st, 2nd & 3rd
      • Two ‘Highly Commended’ with additional ‘Commended’ places
    • 25th July to Aug 7th – Public vote for ‘People’s Choice’ award
      • Based on top five poems recorded by Casualty actors
    • Aug 8th - All Winners & Awards announced
  • JOURNALIST / INFLUENCER - I want to help spread the word, what can I do?
    • Things you can do to help us raise funds for the NHS Charities’ Emergency Appeal;
      • Write an article in your publication covering the competition and its aims
      • Share details on social/blogs of the #WOLBeyondTheStorm competition
      • Video your own favourite poem and share on social using #WoLBeyondTheStorm
      • Encourage poetry groups to publicise and enter the competition
  • About ‘Write Out Loud’
    • Write Out Loud is a hub for participation in poetry, encouraging everyone who writes poetry to share their words with others.
    • Established in 2005,  Write Out Loud is a CIC (NFP) that provides news (events, publishers, books), gig guides, discussions, poetry blogs and competitions to the international Poetry community.
    • The Write Out Loud website has more than four thousand poets as part of its community
    • Alongside over 45,000 visitors each month
    • Write Out Loud has run Poetry competitions since 2012 judged by award winning poets and former poet laureates
    • “We believe passionately in the power of poetry to bring enjoyment, fulfilment and positive change to people’s lives, and our aim is to bring more people to poetry and poetry to more people.”


Judge & Supporter Information

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Head Judge Andrew McMillan's debut collection physical was the first poetry collection to win The Guardian First Book award. It also won the Fenton Aldeburgh First Collection prize, a Somerset Maugham award (2016), an Eric Gregory award (2016) and a Northern Writers’ award (2014). In 2019 it was voted one of the top 25 poetry books of the past 25 years by the Booksellers Association. His second collection, playtime, was published by Jonathan Cape in 2018, and won the inaugural Polari prize. He is senior lecturer at the Manchester Writing School at MMU and lives in Manchester. Andrew has refused a fee for acting as our main judge, as a donation to the appeal.

  • “I want this to bring in serious, considered poetry, but also to have a broader, public appeal, to boost donations at this most critical time in NHS history”

We are also grateful for the support of BBC Casualty producer Dafydd Llewellyn and actors Gabriella Leon, Kirsty Mitchell and Olivia D'Lima, all poetry lovers.

  • Gabriella Leon, who plays Jade Lovell in the drama, is a deaf actor/writer and deviser seeking to change attitudes and misconceptions in the industry around disabilities, visible and invisible. She loves writing and reading poetry, especially the work of Sylvia Plath and Rupi Kaur. IMDB:
    • "As part of this competition we will be reading some of the winning and commended poems on video, on the Write Out Loud website"
  • Glasgow-born Kirsty Mitchell, who plays Faith Cadogan, has a wealth of experience and awards (see her Imdb entry) as an actor, singer and vocal performer for video games. Her break-through acting performance was as Robert Duvall’s daughter in Shot at Glory (2000). IMDB:
    • “We need your help, we need you to send in your poems, written about the time we are living in right now and what the future holds, and what the outcome might be”, explains Kirsty Mitchell, playing Faith Cadogan in BBC Casualty, “we need you to make a donation, it is going through the toughest time it has ever seen.”

  • London-born Olivia D'Lima's work in theatre, film and TV has also led her to writing, which she finds to be an incredible creative outlet and way of creating more work within the industry. She co-founded 'PLUG IN', a bi-monthly comedy night where female and non-binary stand-ups, actors and poets can perform. IMDB:
    • "We would love you to send us poems about the time we are living through, and about what might come after ... maybe yours will be one of them!"

embedded image from entry 101962 Gabriella Leon

embedded image from entry 101963 Kirsty Mitchell

embedded image from entry 101961 Olivia D'Lima


Beyond The Storm Links


◄ ​​​​​​​PRESS RELEASE: Beyond The Storm Poetry Competition launches in support of NHS Charities Together COVID-19 Urgent Appeal


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