We shall be running the competition again in 2018. The suggested (but not compulsory) theme will be ‘Anniversary’: 2018 is of course the centenary of the creation of Czechoslovakia in 1918, as well as the anniversary of those key dates in Czech and Slovak history 1618, 1848, 1938, 1948 and 1968. (They were a year out in 1989!)

The terms and conditions will probably be the same as in 2017. Entries must concern either (1) the links between Britain and the Czech or Slovak Republics (or their predecessor states) at any time in their history or (2) society in transition in the Czech or Slovak Republics since the Velvet Revolution of 1989.

If I could pass on one lesson from recent years, it is to read the guidelines: in 2016 and 2017 several entries were disallowed (no matter how well written) because they did not deal with the prescribed subjects. Enjoy the writing!

The competition will open early in 2018 – watch this space! For more information or to express interest write to the Competition Administrator at prize@bcsa.co.uk or 24 Ferndale, Tunbridge Wells, Kent, TN2 3NS, England.