Home » The Mollie Salisbury Cup: Garden Memoir Competition 2022

The Mollie Salisbury Cup: Garden Memoir Competition 2022

The Garden Museum is delighted to announce the return of the Mollie Salisbury Cup for 2022. Our annual creative writing competition is generously sponsored by the Cecil family in memory of the late Marchioness of Salisbury, a gardener and founding president of The Garden Museum.

How to enter

This year, entrants are invited to submit an original work of no more than 1,500 words on the theme of ‘Gardening With Secrets’. The entries can be based on a real or imaginary garden, and can be in the form of memoir or a short story.

Pay the £10 registration fee below, then send entries to memoir@gardenmuseum.org.uk, no later than Wednesday 1 June.

Judging and Prizes

The winner will receive a prize of £750, will have their story published online to a 15,000-strong readership and in the Garden Museum’s prestigious journal and be invited to read their work at The Garden Museum Literary Festival at Chatsworth. Two runners-up will each receive £250.

The judges this year are consultant and curator Laura Burlington, a trustee of The Garden Museum, award-winning author Cressida Connolly and a member of Lady Salisbury’s family. They will be looking for a distinctive voice, originality and literary merit.

About Mollie Salisbury

Mollie Salisbury (1922 – 2016) was a celebrated garden designer whose glorious creation at Hatfield House, the Jacobean Cecil family home in Hertfordshire, has won plaudits from critics and visitors alike. Despite having no conventional training, her careful study of contemporary houses in England and Europe, and of Hatfield’s archives, led to a garden with formal and informal elements.

Although Lady Salisbury was renowned for her romantic formal garden designs at Hatfield and Highgrove her deepest belief was in gardening for everyone, and the Memoir Competition celebrates every kind of garden. Lady Salisbury worked tirelessly well into her eighties, and was an early campaigner for organic gardening. Her memoirs, A Gardener’s Life (Frances Lincoln, 2007), tell her remarkable story.

Terms & Conditions

Terms and conditions: the competition is open to individuals aged 18 and over, published or unpublished. To enter, send an original, unpublished piece of memoir writing, written in English, on the subject of ‘Gardening With Secrets’, of up to 1,500 words to memoir@gardenmuseum.org.uk
The competition closes at midnight on 1 June 2022. Entries received after the closing date will not be considered. The winner will be selected by a panel of judges and will be based on literary merit, originality and readability.
Entrants will be deemed to have accepted these terms and to have agreed to be bound by them. We cannot provide feedback on individual entries.
The winner will receive a £750 prize. Two runners-up will each receive a prize of £250.
This competition is not open to any employees of the Garden Museum, the promoter or their immediate families, the promoter’s advertising agency and sales-promotion consultancy, or anyone else connected with the creation and administration of the competition. Only one competition entry, fulfilling the eligibility requirements above, will be accepted per person. Once selected, only the winner(s) will be contacted personally by email, using the contact details provided upon entry.
 Entry to the competition and acceptance of the prize constitutes permission to use any entrant’s name, image and any competition-entry photograph, for promotional and/or editorial purposes in any format in print and non-print media without additional consultation. It is assumed that you have the permission of your employer for any time off work that is required to claim the prize. The Garden Museum or the third party are not liable in any way to any winner who cannot attend. Winners will be notified by 15th June 2022.
By entering the competition and in consideration for the Garden Museum publishing your entry, you assign to the Garden Museum the entire worldwide copyright in your entry for all uses in all print and non-print media and formats, including but not limited to all rights to use your entry in any and all electronic and digital formats, and in any future medium hereafter developed for the full period of copyright therein, and all renewals and extensions thereof, any rental and lending rights and retransmission rights and all rights of a like nature wherever subsisting. The Garden Museum’s decision is final in every situation, including any not covered above, and no correspondence will be entered into in respect of the validity of any such decision. The Garden Museum shall be permitted to exclude or disqualify any entrant at any time at its sole discretion. The Garden Museum reserves the right to exclude late, incomplete or multiple registrations, or registrations made by third parties or agents. The Garden Museum does not accept any responsibility for late or lost entries. Proof of sending is not proof of receipt.
Once entered, entries cannot be returned or withdrawn. Spammers will be disqualified. Prizes must be taken as stated, although the Garden Museum reserves the right to change the prize in the event of unforeseen circumstances. By entering the competition, you agree to the terms of the Privacy Policy. In addition, the Garden Museum may pass your personal information to the promoters of the competition (where it is not the Garden Museum) and their data processors. However, we always demand that any such parties adhere to the same security procedures that we follow ourselves. The Garden Museum reserves the right to (i) cancel and/or withdraw this competition and/or (ii) amend these terms, at any time without notice. To the fullest extent permitted by applicable law, in no event will the Garden Museum be liable, whether in contract, tort (including negligence), breach of statutory duty, or otherwise, for any loss, damage or injury arising under or in connection with this competition. These terms are governed by English law, and entrants agree to submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the English courts in relation to all matters arising under or in connection with these terms.