The People’s Play Award: A Playwriting Competition for Northern Writers

This Award is for playwrights from the North of England who are yet to have a play performed professionally.  Past winners include Peter Straughan (BAFTA & Oscar-winner for ‘Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy’), Carina Rodney (Audible, BBC Radio 4, Live Theatre) and Alison Carr (National Theatre, Finalist: Women’s Prize for Playwriting, BBC Radio 4).

One winning script will be chosen for a five-night production by us in the People’s Theatre Studio in June 2023, and the writer will receive a cash prize of £1,000.



  • Do send an original, unpublished and unproduced stage play. The play must not have had any production in any form, anywhere in the world, apart from a maximum of three public readings, showcases or performances. Please supply details of these readings/showcases/performances with your entry.
  • Do send a complete, full-length script. While there is provision for one read-through which may result in some redrafting, the People’s are looking for a play that is largely ready for production.
  • Do send us a stage play with a minimum running time of 60 minutes (there is no maximum running time). It can have an interval or not. If you’re not sure how long your play is, try reading it out loud.
  • Do be aware of the space available (a black box studio with a performing area of approx. 5m x 7m).
  • Do think about the cast size. There’s been plays with cast sizes of 3 – 15 in the new Studio Theatre so far, so there’s flexibility. They are an amateur theatre so they have the luxury of being able to stage plays with larger casts. But equally, be realistic.
  • Do own and control all copyright and all other related rights to the submitted script. It must be available for production and unattached to any other organisation or individual.
  • Do currently live in the North of England.
  • Don’t  send TV, film or radio scripts.
  • Don’t send us translations, adaptations of classic plays or other existing works, or musicals.
  • Don’t send us more than one script. One entry per person.



6pm on Friday 30 September 2022. 

The winning play will have a rehearsed reading in December 2022, to allow the writer to develop the script as necessary before rehearsals start in April 2023.

Published on:
1 Jul 2022
Opportunity deadline:
30 Sep 2022


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  1. I can’t see how to submit to this opportunity.

    by Benjamin Peel
    1:20 pm, 1 Jul 2022
    1. Apologies- you’ve caught it just as I’m uploading it

      Info via the link- they accept script via email or post



      by Chloe Smith
      1:26 pm, 1 Jul 2022
  2. Thanks very much Chloe.

    by Benjamin Peel
    1:40 pm, 1 Jul 2022