New Travel Writer of the Year 2021: Longlisted entries

The first round of judging is over and here are the eighteen entries that have made it on to this year’s longlist for you to enjoy.

The anonymity of the writers has been preserved until the final judging has been completed, so there are no names attached to these pieces yet. The shortlist of three will be announced at the end of January, along with the other shortlists for the Edward Stanford Travel Writing Awards, and after that we’ll add the writers’ names to these posts.

Congratulations to all the longlisted writers – you’ll know who you are! Commiserations to those who haven’t made the cut and thank you for entering. Although no one has been travelling much this year, the standard of entries was every bit as high as usual and we greatly enjoyed reading all of them.

Preliminary judge Janice Booth comments:

‘Horizons clearly haven’t been stunted by Covid 19: this year’s destinations spread from Scarborough to the Sahara, New York to Nepal and Australia to the Arctic, with many others in between. Entries include bandits, blackbirds, Brexit, cave art, earthquakes, fireworks, fish & chips, graveyards, icebergs, logging, a mink coat, otters, owls, perfume, safaris, sharks, stars, trekking, wooden whistles . . . and a whole lot more. The all-important theme, “I’d love to go back”, was well used in all but a few cases so the overall mood is one of reflective nostalgia, for places that the writers loved before coronavirus struck and long to see again once it recedes.’

Here are excerpts to the eighteen pieces:

“Who are you?!”

“Who are you?!”

By Tom Swithenbank

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585 Bury Road

585 Bury Road

By Jennifer Thompson

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For Here Be Barbarians

For Here Be Barbarians

By Christopher Walsh

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Oddballs’

Oddballs’

By Marilyn Denbigh

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Refuge

Refuge

By Richard Lakin

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Seagull Song

Seagull Song

By Amanda Huggins

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The Dream of the Desert

The Dream of the Desert

By Agnieszka Herman

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The Man I Met

The Man I Met

By Marc Jones

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The Officer

The Officer

By John McFadzean

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We Saw It All

We Saw It All

By Hebe Nicholls

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