A POEM about any town or village in Thurrock could land its writer a tidy £1,000.

United Press’s local poem competition is in full swing again, in which anyone can have a go at writing about the place they love for a cash prize, even if they’ve never tried poetry before.

The poem must be no more than 25 lines, which includes blank lines, and 160 words in total.

A United Press spokesman said: “It can even be about something or someone from the poet’s home area.

“We find that poems written from personal observation and experience are the most heartfelt and expressive, so we’re expecting some great entries from your readers.

“The contest is designed to encourage ordinary people to write poetry – to both express themselves and be more creative.”

Previous winning poems have been about a river, a tower, a local character, village life and village history.

Last year’s winner was from Darwen in Lancashire, with previous winners coming from Leicester, Surrey, Bristol, Oxford, Stafford, Rotherham and Greater Manchester.

Entry is open to anyone and only requires the poem be sent via email with the subject “Local Poem” to info@unitedpress.co.uk or by post to United Press Ltd, Admail 3735, London, EC1B 1JB before December 31.