Alan Titchmarsh, Joanna Trollope and Hunter Davies are set to judge the inaugural Isle of Wight Book Awards in 2022, which will recognise and celebrate books that are Island-centric. 

The awards have been born out of an idea from well-known author and prolific journalist, Hunter Davies, who has a home on the Island. He has started the awards with Peter Harrigan and Krissy Lloyd of the Medina Bookshop in Cowes and the aim is to promote interest in the Isle of Wight, as well as encouraging local authors to write and self-publish their own stories.

The Isle of Wight will be only the second region in the whole of the UK with its own regional book awards. The winners will be aptly announced at a splendid literary lunch in September 2022 – on Isle of Wight Day.

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There will be 3 categories to enter – fiction, nonfiction and children’s books. You need not live on the Island and the books can be in the past or present, just as long as there is a strong element connected with the Isle of Wight. The 3 categories are being sponsored by local businesses Hovertravel, The Isle of Wight Festival and Hose Rhodes and Dickson.

For the inaugural year, books that have been published in the last 5 years will be allowed to enter. However, moving forward, the annual awards will be for books published during the previous year. Submissions must be published books, not e-books, however, print-on-demand books will be accepted. Unpublished manuscripts are not eligible.

Entries should be submitted by March 2022 with the shortlists set to be revealed in August. Everyone on the shortlists will get a certificate and the winners will receive £100 each. There will be 1 book that will be acclaimed as ‘The Isle of Wight Book of the Year’, agreed upon by all the judges.

Hunter Davies says:

“I honestly do believe everyone has a book in them. Ok, possibly not fiction. Have you seen some modern novels? Everyone has a story to tell about their life, their family, their research, their hobbies, their interests. These days self-publishing is not too expensive or complicated so you can do it yourself and take pride in passing around finished copies to your family and friends and neighbours and I am sure a kindly local book shop on the island will display copies”.

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For further details and entry forms, visit

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