2017 Winners

We are delighted to announce the winners of The Orwell Youth Prize 2017. Congratulations to our winners, runners-up and highly-commended – and to all who entered. We received 178 entries and every entry was read by at least two assessors. Thank you for giving us a chance to read your writing.

The winners were chosen by best-selling and award-winning writer and journalist and Orwell Fellow Nicci Gerrard, who judged the final round of the Prize. Nicci said:

I’ve been bowled over by how freshly and fearlessly these young writers grappled with the subject of identity, finding their own ways of interpreting it, and their own vibrant voices to convey something of its complexity. It was striking how many of them acknowledged the constructed nature of the self, so that whether they were approaching identity through gender, culture, social media, inherited faith or the agonies of Brexit, the question was always there of of what it actually means to be ‘me’.





Junior Prize

Senior Prize


Runners Up

Junior Prize

  • Joe Atkinson, Inconvenient Truths about Political Identity
  • Georgia Balmer, The True Identity of Lisa
  • Adam De Salle, Theft
  • Leah Figiel, The Dream Snatchers
  • George Robinson, Once Upon the Mind
  • Catherine Tickell, Mother, who are you?

Senior Prize

  • Zarah Alam, Monday 15th May 2017
  • Jessica Curry, Pride
  • Richa Kapoor, World Peace
  • Lauryn Kelly, Why left-liberalism hasn’t protected LGBT people
  • Naomi Kerr, Southbound Identity
  • Cameron O’Sullivan, Monsters and Men


The standard of entries this year was incredibly high. The following entries, from both categories, were also highly commended:

  • Ashna Ahmad, Hey, Who Stole My Culture?
  • Kate Baird, To Feel, Therefore I Am
  • Charissa Cheong, Generation Blank
  • Alex De Brunner, The Impact of Wanting an Identity
  • Blythe DeBeer, Citizens of Nowhere
  • Flo Ellary, You mixed?
  • Lucinda Hogarth, Angry women full of hope will change the world
  • Felicity Hudson, Are We Now What We Were?
  • Lucy Knight, Uncharted Territory
  • Matilda Lammin, Gender Identity
  • Ambrin McBrinn, A Letter on Identity
  • Lucy McManus, Cold Hands
  • Sasha-Annalies Moore, To Journey in the Dark
  • Lucas Pringle, Teenager. Texan. Undocumented. American.
  • Shaina Sangha, Sets of Numbers
  • Aidan Tulloch, The New Un-curiosity Shop
  • Hannah Wallace, I Can Sing a Rainbow
  • Niamh Weir, #Identity