The nominees for a prestigious Ledbury poetry award with a £5,000 prize have been announced.

The shortlist for the fourth Ledbury Hellens Poetry Prize for Second Collections, targets poets at the mid-career stage, feature six acclaimed works published in Britain and Ireland in 2021 and 2022.

Contending for this recognition are 'Pilgrim Bell' by Kaveh Akbar, 'All the Names Given' by Raymond Antrobus, 'A Blood Condition' by Kayo Chingonyi, 'England’s Green' by Zaffar Kunial, 'The Poison Glen' by Annemarie Ní Churreáin, and 'Bloom' by Sarah Westcott.

The winner will be brought into the limelight at an online award ceremony set for 7pm on Monday December 4.

Judges Togara Muzanenhamo and Penelope Shuttle will examine both the shortlisted second collections and the poets' debut books.

Previous winners of the prize, which is highly valued by publishers for putting the limelight on collections that might fall by the wayside, include Sandeep Parmar, A.K Blakemore and Claudine Toutoungi.

Togara Muzanenhamo, who is a Poetry Society Autumn Recommendation in his own right, said: "It is truly an honour to be a judge for the Ledbury Hellens Poetry Prize for Second Collections.

"The award is particularly special because it celebrates the accomplishment of what can be an artistic hurdle for some poets – compiling a second collection.

"There are numerous prizes for ‘first collections’ and ‘best collections’ but few focus on the pivotal role of a poets’ second book – a book that may highlight a poet’s maturing voice or solidify their career. I am excited at the prospect of reading work that will confidently explore and freely navigate language and introduce us to voices that will shape the future of poetry."

Penelope Shuttle, who judged the Women Poets' Prize in 2022, added: "A poet's second collection can be a perilous stepping stone in building a poet’s profile.

"This Prize seeks to make sure second collections are guaranteed deep and serious consideration.

"In this way a light is shone upon collections that otherwise might remain in the shadows."

Free tickets to the award show are available to reserve online at