Over the past dozen years, the Charles Parker Prize – named in honour of one of radio’s greatest documentary pioneers – has established an unparalleled reputation for excellence in radio feature production by young people. From the very first award in 2005, the judges have been repeatedly and gratifyingly astonished by the levels of invention, creative imagination and sheer production intelligence shown by entrants. So it’s not surprising that many of our winners have gone on to carve out successful professional careers in radio.
The Prize is open to any student of radio production at Further or Higher Education establishments throughout the United Kingdom. The feature should in some way reflect an essence of Parker’s own work – for example, story led documentaries (or short features) that bring life to the stories and concerns of ordinary people through creative radio production techniques.
From 2010-2018 three Prizes were awarded – Gold, Silver and Bronze; since then there have been five winners one of which is deemed to be a Gold Award. You can listen to some of the winning entries on the Soundcloud channel or the Mixcloud Page as well as on the pages listed below.
Since 2019 BBC Radio 4 has joined with the Trust to offer a broadcast slot on the network to each five winners. They are invited to collaborate with a coach drawn from some of the very best feature-makers working in radio in order to adapt their features for transmission on BBC Radio 4 in the early summer.