About the T. S. Eliot Prize

The T. S. Eliot Prize for Poetry was inaugurated in 1993 to celebrate the Poetry Book Society’s 40th birthday and honour its founding poet.

Described as ‘the prize most poets want to win’ (Sir Andrew Motion, former Poet Laureate) and ‘the world’s top poetry award’ (Independent), it is awarded annually to the author of the best new collection of poetry published in the UK and Ireland.

The T. S. Eliot Prize for Poetry was inaugurated in 1993 to celebrate the Poetry Book Society’s 40th birthday and honour its founding poet.

It is firmly established as the most valuable and prestigious prize in the UK for a new collection of poetry. It is distinctive among poetry prizes in being judged by a panel of established poets. In 2015, to mark the 50th anniversary of T. S. Eliot’s death, the T. S. Eliot Estate increased the value of the Prize named in his honour. The winner now receives £20,000 and the ten shortlisted poets each receive £1,500.

In 2016 the Poetry Book Society closed down, transferring its book club to Inpress Ltd. The T. S. Eliot Prize was taken over by the T. S. Eliot Foundation, which will run and support it going forward.

Media queries relating to the T. S. Eliot Prize should be addressed to Gina Rozner gina@giantroosterpr.co.uk

List of previous winners

  • 2016 | Jacob Polley Jackself
  • 2015 | Sarah Howe Loop of Jade
  • 2014 | David Harsent Fire Songs
  • 2013 | Sinéad Morrissey  Parallax
  • 2012 | Sharon Olds Stag’s Leap
  • 2011 | John Burnside Black Cat Bone
  • 2010 | Derek Walcott White Egrets
  • 2009 | Philip Gross The Water Table
  • 2008 | Jen Hadfield Nigh-No-Place
  • 2007 | Sean O’Brien The Drowned Book
  • 2006 | Seamus Heaney District and Circle
  • 2005 | Carol Ann Duffy Rapture
  • 2004 | George Szirtes Reel
  • 2003 | Don Paterson Landing Light
  • 2002 | Alice Oswald Dart
  • 2001 | Anne Carson The Beauty of the Husband
  • 2000 | Michael Longley The Weather in Japan
  • 1999 | Hugo Williams Billy’s Rain
  • 1998 | Ted Hughes Birthday Letters
  • 1997 | Don Paterson God’s Gift to Women
  • 1996 | Les Murray Subhuman Redneck Poems
  • 1995 | Mark Doty My Alexandria
  • 1994 | Paul Muldoon The Annals of Chile
  • 1993 | Ciaran Carson First Language: Poems