A writers group to inspire & encourage all writers
Watford Writers


2017 Competion Results


Flash Fiction Winners - "Liar" 20th March



1. Brian Bold

2. Cynthia Marsh

3= Steve Clifford

3= Trevor Spinage


Flash Fiction Winners - "Success" 13th February



1. Steve Clifford

2= Mike Lansdown

2= Rob Summers


Play Competition Winners January 30th


1. David Elliott

2. Cynthia Marsh

3. Caroline Lynch


Flash Fiction Winners - "Scotland" January 23rd


 1. David Elliott

2. Cynthia Marsh

3. Mike Lansdown



2016 Competition Results

Flash Fiction Winners - "Halloween"  October 31st


1. Trevor Spinage

2. Steve Clifford

3. Helen Nicell


Non-Fiction Competition October 3rd


1. Trevor Spinage

2. David Elliott

3. Cynthia Marsh


Flash Poetry Winners "Space" September 12th


1. Jo Hopkinson

2. Helen Nicell

3. Chris Cottee


Flash Fiction Winners "Weeds" August 15th

1.  Helen Nicell

2.  Helen Nicell

3= Rachel Muirhead and David Elliott


Flash Fiction Winners "Three in One" July 18th

1. Helen Nicell

2. Chris Cottee

3. John Ward


Flash Fiction Winners "Missing" June 20th


1.   Cynthia Marsh

2.= Louise Broadbent

2.= Chris Cottee (not in picture!)


Flash Fiction Winners "Life Line" May 9th

1. Rob Summers

2. David Brunt

3. David Elliott


Flash Fiction Winners "After an interval" March 14th


1. Helen Nicell

2. Cynthia Marsh

3. Rosemary Morris


Flash Fiction Winners "Valentine Day" February 15th


1.  Rob Summers

2.  Rosemary Morris

3= Dave Gould

3= Steve Clifford


Flash Fiction Winners "Afterwards" January 18th

1. Chris Cottee

2. Rob Summers

3. Brian Bold





Flash Fiction Winners "Revenge" December 7th

1. Cynthia Marsh

2. Steve Clifford

3. Rachel Muirhead

with John Ward


Flash Fiction Winners "Sacrifice" November 9th

Our Third Man rises to the top!


1. Trevor Spinage

2. Brian Bold

3. Helen Nicell


Flash Fiction Winners "The Wrong Room" October 5th

1. Roger Parish

2. Rob Summers

3. Trevor Spinage

with Sue Petit


Flash Fiction Winners "The Secret" September 7th


1. Rachel Muirhead

2. Brian Bold

3. Yvonne Zost (not present)


Flash Fiction Winners "Barefoot" August 3rd


1. Steve Clifford

2. Phil Cooper

3. Trevor Spinage


Flash Fiction Winners "Celebrity" June 29th


1. Cynthia Marsh

2. David Elliott

3. Steve Clifford

With Sue Bennett


Flash Fiction Winners "The Invitation" June 8th

The winners's Table! Sue Petit Presents the Prize Envelope


1. Rob Summers

2. Helen Nicell

3. Chris Cottee


Flash Fiction Winners  "Made of Metal" May 11th 

1. Chris Cottee (Not present)

2. Steve Clifford

3. Rob Summers


Flash Fiction Winners "Beyond the Gate" 30th March


1. Rob Summers

2. Kimberley Wilcox

3. Cynthia Marsh


2015 Writer's Block Winners

First Place - Rob Summers

Receiving the new Writer's Block Trophy from our judge 

Sarah Kerenza Priestley, Curator of Watford Museum 

Second and Third Place! - Trevor Spinage 


Flash Fiction "TEN" Winners 23rd February 

1. Trevor Spinage

2. Rob Summers

3. SteveClifford

4. Helen Nicell


Flash Poetry "Love" Winners 26th January

1. Sue Petit

2= Helen Nicell

2= Lukasz Kwiatkowski

3= Cynthia Marsh

3= Robert Patterson


Flash Fiction "The Package" Winners 12th January 

1.  Rob Summers

2= Dominic Kenna

2= Steve Prizeman







Flash Fiction Winners "Sharks" 1st November

1. Robert Paterson

2. Jennie Willett

3. Helen Nicell


Flash Fiction Winners "Fire" 3rd November

1. David Elliott

2. Cynthia Marsh

3. = Laura Rouse

3. = Helen Nicell


Flash Fiction Winners "Drowning" 13th October 2014


1. Trevor Spinnage

2. Chris Cottee (Represented by Louise)

3. Dan Cooper

4. Rob Summers


Flash Fiction Winners "October" 15th September 2014


1. Rob Summers

2.= Sam Gardham

2.= Kimberley Simcox

4. Helen Nicell


Flash Fiction Winners -  "Broken" 18th August 2014

1. Rob Summers

2. Steven Prizeman

3. Trevor Spinage

4. Dan Cooper


Monologue Winners -  14th July 2014


Rosie Bristow - "It feels like Thursday"




Ian Wilson (on left) - "Listen"


Third Equal

Trevor Spinage - "Medium Sweet"

Helen Nicell - "Money can buy 'Appiness!"



2014 Richard Harrington Trophy Literature Competition Results

The winning stories were chosen by a panel of four judges; Richard Harrington MP, Cllr Keith Crout, Peter Wilson-Leary, Watford Observer editor and Grelle White, WAAF magazine editor. Stories ranged from a childhood view of war, parents' worries, obsessive compulsive disorder, the Peace Memorial statue and many more.

The winning entry 'The New Captain' by Helen Nicell, was a humorous piece, brought to life by David Rose's reading and perfect comedy timing. Grelle White presented Helen with the trophy and a £50 cash prize, kindly donated by Richard Harrington, who was unfortunately unable to attend.


Tying for second place were :

David Elliott with 'Point of View' and Brian Bold's  'Many Happy Returns of the Day'.

Kimberley Simcox was placed fourth with 'Sunrise'.




The remaining six stories short-listed were:

Trevor Spinage - To Sleep Perchance To Dream

Sue Pettit - Waiting

Jackie Green - Brothers in Arms

John Ramsey - The Importance of Exactitude

Dominic Kenna - All in a Deus Work

Steve Prizeman - Garden


The top ten stories will soon be available to read on the Watford Observer Website

You can read the winning story now. Click on this link.


Winning Story


THE NEW CAPTAIN by Helen Nicell


"If you want to join 'The Peace Movement Group' you have to do something really big!"

          Carl nodded, in awe of 16 year old Seth. "Yea, of course. Err, do you have something in mind?"

          Stroking the teenage stubble on his chin, Seth paused for a second, "I want you to get our message out there. I want you to spread the word to as many people as possible. You show me you can do it and you're in the group man."

Carl lay in bed that night unable to sleep, he wanted to belong. He'd been bullied for so long, people always laughing at him, especially once his learning difficulties first came to light. This was a fresh start, a new school, new friends and the chance to join a group for a cause he believed in. The buzz of the motorway hummed through the night, at 4.00am the idea came to him. Dressing in a black hoodie and jeans, he crept silently out of the house and opened the garage. Armed with Dad's roller for painting and white emulsion, Carl made his way to the disused Victorian viaduct over the M25. His mission took him nearly an hour; there was very little traffic and fortunately no police around at that time of the night. Hanging over the side of the bridge, he completed the task as daylight broke. Rubbing sore arms and with an aching back, he made his way home, not waking anyone as he slipped into the house.

At lunchtime, Seth put his arm around Carl's shoulder.

          "Any thoughts?"

          "Yes," Carl blushed and hesitated "err, I've done something, it’s pretty amazing."

          "Wow, you're a quick worker Carl." Seth smiled.

          "I can show you after school."


Seth and the rest of the 'Peace Movement' waited at the school gates. Carl smiled broadly as about 30 of them followed him and Seth to the field by the edge of the motorway. He didn't look up at the bridge, but turned his back to it. Mustering a new-found confidence, he proudly announced to the gathered group,
          "Members of 'The Peace Movement', my contribution to spreading our message to anyone that travels along this motorway every single day." He held his arm up high, pointing towards the white letters painted on the grey bricks.

          Scanning the assembled faces, confused looks stared back, and then sniggers rippled at the back of the crowd. Seth shook his head. The throng were laughing out loud now and pointing at the bridge. Seth smiled slowly.

          "Brilliant Carl. I name you our newest captain - Captain Birdseye."

          Carl turned to look at the graffiti on the motorway bridge, to his horror he read,



Flash Fiction Winners -  "Time" 9th June 2014


1. Helen Nicell

2. Steven Prizeman

3. Trevor Spinage


Flash Fiction Winners -  "Shadows" 12th May 2014

1. Steven Prizeman

2. Steve Clifford

3= Dan Cooper

3= Rob Summers


Flash Fiction Winners -  "Another World" 7th April 2014

1. Steve Clifford

2. Helen Nicell

3. Trevor Spinage



Morag Watkins, proprietor of the Chorleywood Bookshop kindly agreed to judge this year's entries. Morag is also the organiser of the highly successful Chorleywood Lit Festival and you can find details of further events at http://chorleywoodbookshop.co.uk/

 1st Place

Andrew Lang

 Li Tian

An intriguing story, encapsulating the stillness and peace of a Chinese monastery, almost feeling like a fairy story. The language and ease of reading made this my favourite 


2nd Place

Peter Young

Gods at War

This story contained a lot of character and I loved the science element contained within the tale, plus the use of all the elements


3rd Place

Trevor Spinage

Time will Tell

Very believable central character, a strong mother with a weak father, very clever double twist at the end of this seance related story


Flash Fiction Winners -  "Journey" 13th January 2014

1. Rob Summers

2. Steve Clifford

3. Steve Clifford


Flash Fiction Winners -  "Time Flies" 13th January 2014


1. Rob Summers

1. Steve Clifford

3. Trevor Spinage



2013 Competition Results



Winner of the 2013 Chorleywood LitFest Writing Competition

Jackie is the first local winner of this competition which attracts entries from across the UK and beyond. 


Jackie received her prize from journalist, Melissa Benn


Flash Fiction Winners -  Mind Reading 18th November 2013

1= Kimberley Simcox

1= John Ward

3.  Helen Nicell


Flash Fiction Winners -  My Dreams 21st October 2013


1. Jessica Moss

2. Helen Nicell

3. Jo Wilkinson



Winner of Children's Story Competition

and a place at Swanwick Summer Writing School



Flash Fiction Winners - Story in Verse 8th July 2013


 1. Kimberley Simcox

 2. Chris Glover

 3. Robert Paterson



Watfored Live! 2013 Literature Competition

(THe Richard Harrington Challenge Cup)

'One Day'...I Will Start Writing

 Awards Presentation Watford Live

1. Until Next Year - Rob Summers

2. Walking Together - Janice Day

3. Our Little Secret - John Ramsey


Other Shortlisted Stories in No Particular Order

The Heart of the Matter - Jackie Green

Beam Me Up Granny - Trevor Spinage

Circle - Gary Cole

Autumn Watch - Hayden Illingworth

Full Circle - Colin Jackson

Chariots of Fire - John Ward


The winning snd shortlisted stories can be read on the Watford Observer Website via this link


 Details of the Award Event at the Watford Museum on 20th June are on the Watford Area Arts Forum site

The stories will appear on posters in Watford Bus Shelters during July


Flash Fiction Winners - Sci Fi Stories 13th May 2013

1. David Silver

2. Trevor Spinage

3. Jo Wilkinson

4. Dan Cooper


 Flash Fiction Winners - No Theme 15th April 2013


1. Chris Glover

2. Jennie Willett

3. Chris Glover

4. Rob Summers/Chris Glover (Joint Entry)



Flash Fiction Winners - ' The Wheel' Theme 11th March 2013


1. Trevor Spinage

2. Kimberley Simcox

3. Rob Summers

4. Helen Nicell



Commenting on the eleven entries, Judges Sue Hampton and Leslie Tate said:

All entries were interesting, inventive and ambitious, using varied strategies such as letters and reports to tell the story. They were distinctive and memorable, with several original approaches to the title. After much consideration and debate they chose the following four winners:

1st Place

Brian Bold

Tight Trousers

A sharp and funny moral tale poking fun at obesity, competitive corporate thinking and addiction to gadgetry


Other Winners


L to R Chris Glover, Trevor Spinage, Leslie Tate, Brian Bold, Rob Summers, Sue Hampton

2nd Place

Rob Summers

Bacon, Lettuce and Tomato

A well-worded, ambitious piece of writing which showed real skill in describing people and places, with a clever end-twist to the story

3rd Place

Trevor Spinage

Of Shoes and Ships and Sealing Wax

Strong on feeling-tone, this piece went deep into the experience of Alzheimer's seen from within - a sensitive piece of writing

4th Place

Chris Glover

In the Depth of All Symphonies

An intensely poetic, atmospheric piece with some highly original phrases and expressions and a consistent tone sustained throughout

Our Judges

Sue Hampton and Leslie Tate are very successful published authors of novels, young adult books and poetry. You can find out more about their individual works from their websites by clicking on these links

Sue Hampton

Leslie Tate


Flash Fiction Winners - ' Pleasure' Theme 28th January 2013

1. Chris Glover

2. Rob Summers

3. Kimberley Angel 

4. Rob Summers



2012 Competition Results


Flash Fiction Winners - ' Flash' Theme 5th November 2012

1. Helen Nicell

2. Jo Wilkinson

3. John Ward

4. Chris Glover


Flash Fiction Winners - ' Pioneer' Theme 24th September 2012

1. Helen Nicell

2. Rob Summers

3. Kimberley Angel & Angela Hunter


Flash Fiction Winners - ' The Question' Theme 21st August 2012

1. Brian Bold

2. Jackie Green

3. Patricia Kavanagh-Brown & Trevor Spinage


Flash Fiction Winners - ' Hanging' Theme 9th July 2012

1. Helen Nicell

2. Angela Hunter

3. Trevor Spinage


Flash Fiction Winners - 'Diamond' Theme 28th May 2012



1. Trevor Spinage

2. Brian Bold

3. Phil Cooper

1. Helen Nicell

2. Sue Pettit

3. John Ward


Flash Fiction Winners - 'Scout' Theme 16th April 2012

1st Helen Nicell

2nd Brian Bold

3rd Chris Glover


Flash Fiction Winners - 'Eggs' Theme 2nd April 2012


1st Helen Nicell

2nd Rob Summers

3rd Chris Glover




After a comprehensive review of the 14 entries,

judges Nick Cook and Janet Baldey announced the top three stories

1st Place

Chris Glover

 Steph, Only for You



2nd and 3rd Place

Boo Bradshaw

The Cottage (2nd)  Cat (3rd)


Flash Fiction Winners - 'Accession' Theme 6th February 2012

1st: Trevor Spinage

2nd: Trevor Spinage

3rd: Brian Bold

4th: Angela Hunter


Flash Fiction Winners - 'Games' Theme 23rd January 2012


1st: Helen Nicell

2nd: Rob Summers

3rd: Rob Summers

4th: Trevor Spinage




Harrow/Watford Writers Short Story Final

Thursday 13th October at Harrow Arts Centre

 A  Harrow Writers story took first place, with a story from Watford Writers second.

All the other stories tied for third place!

The cakes also won a prize! Thanks to Harrow Writers for their hospitality


 First : Age Chasm by Barbara Arden-White (Harrow Writers)

 Second : Sweet Little Lies by Rae Argent (Watford Writers)


Other finalists in no particular order:

Hotel California by John Ward (W)

The Life of Brian by Brian Bold (H)

The Betrayal by Jennie Willett (H)

Danny Boy by Sue Petitt (W)

Riot by Trevor Spinage (W)

Abracadabra by Julia Underwood (H)



Blue Door Short Story Competition Results

Watford Writers announce the winners of their first open short story competition run in conjunction with Watford Area Arts Forum. 

Grelle White editor of WAAF and local novelist Leigh Russell had the difficult task of judging all the entries and WAAF chairman Jaffer Bhimji presented prizes.

Rob Summers's short story entitled Bleu D'or was placed first, winning him a year's subscription to Watford Writers and publication in the next issue of WAAF, illustrated by local artist Marianne Keibel.


Second place of 6 months subscription was awarded to Sue Bennett

with Angela Hunter and Helen Nicell receiving joint third prizes.





FLASH FICTION 250 words on theme of DIRT 16/5/11

 1st Rosie Moorhead

 2nd Steph King

 3rd Darren Andrews


FLASH FICTION 100 words on theme of LOST 6/6/11

1st Rob Summers

2nd Trevor Spinage

3rd Helen Nicell


LOVE STORY Competition 13/6/11

1st Liz Simpson

2nd Helen Nicell & Rob Summers (Joint authors)

3rd Brian Bold


FLASH FICTION 200 words on theme of NEWBORN 8/8/11

1st Steph (Visitor)

2nd Chris Glover

3rd Rob Summers






BLUE DOOR COMPETITION 500 words  6/9/11

1st Rob Summers

2nd Sue Bennett

3rd Helen Nicell and Angela Hunter (Joint winners)



FLASH FICTION 400 words on theme of BANALITY 3/10/11

1st Rob Summers

2nd Rae Argent

3rd Brian Bold




1st Trevor Spinage

2nd Rob Summers

3rd Brian Bold


Prizes presented by our competition judge, Alan Jamieson