The Lancaster Playwriting Prize 2019- for playwrights over the age of 55 in the North West

The Lancaster Playwriting Prize is an initiative arising out of the cultural partnership between Lancaster University and The Dukes Theatre, Lancaster; it is supported by Lucy Briers. The Prize aims to discover new voices from a diverse range of backgrounds; each year, it has different entry criteria in order to reach underserved playwrights.

For 2019, the Prize is focused on unproduced writers aged over 55 who are based in North West England. The winner will receive £1500. The Prize shortlist and winner will be announced in Autumn 2019.



The window for scripts opens on 19th August 2019. 

The date for last entries is noon on 27th September 2019.



  • They are looking for theatre scripts from writers over the age of 55.
  • All writers submitting must have no prior full-length professional theatre work produced.
  • They’re eager to read new work which throws light on how we live now, expands our horizons, explores current issues, or reveals a previously untold story.
  • They’re happy to consider scripts for family and young audiences, as well as scripts for adult audiences; however, it must be an original story, not an adaptation of an existing text, film or novel.


  • The competition is open to writers over 55 years old who are resident or work in the North West of England. For the purposes of this prize, the North West consists of Cheshire, Cumbria, Greater Manchester, Lancashire and Merseyside.
  • Writers must be 55 or over on 19th August 2019 (all shortlisted writers will be asked to provide proof of age).
  • All writers submitting must have no prior full-length professional theatre work produced. For the purposes of this competition, a professional production refers to a play that has had more than five performances in front of a paying audience; it also features paid performers, directors and production teams. Rehearsed readings or development workshops are not counted as prior professional productions; nor are works written for youth or non-professional performers. Works under forty minutes are also discounted as prior professional productions.
  • The play must be an original, unpublished and unproduced piece of work. It cannot have had a professional production anywhere in the world (see the above criteria for clarification).
  • Adaptations of existing works of musical theatre, radio, television or other media are not eligible; translations of said works are also excluded.
    Musical theatre scripts are not eligible.
  • Scripts must be a minimum of 40 minutes long and all pages must be numbered.

Published on:
9 Aug 2019


Add comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *