DURHAM Cathedral has launched its first ever composition competition.

The anthems contest is open to young composers aged 18 to 30 and carries a first prize of £500.

The winning composition will be performed during a special Cathedral service to mark the opening of this summer’s Durham exhibition of the Lindisfarne Gospels.

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It will also be performed by the Lindisfarne Gospels Community Choir, a large choir formed to mark the occasion of the exhibition.

Entries should last no longer than four minutes and stand within the English choral tradition. The deadline for submissions is Sunday, March 31.

Shortlisted entries will be performed in a public workshop given by the Durham Cathedral Consort of Singers on Friday, May 24.

A judging panel of composer John Casken, Durham Cathedral choirmaster James Lancelot and choral expert Professor Jeremy Dibble, of Durham University, will then pick a winner.

For more information, visit durhamcathedral.co.uk