Big Issue Vendor

Puffin adds 80 children’s books to the prize for our Spring Cover Competition

We're asking artists aged 12 years and under to show us who their heroes are to be in with a chance of having their work on the cover of The Big Issue magazine

The Big Issue’s first-ever Spring Cover Competition is in full swing — and things just got even more exciting.

We’re delighted to welcome Puffin Books, publisher of some of the best-known and loved children’s books, as our partner for the competition.

The company is celebrating its 80th birthday this year, and to mark it they are providing  an extra-special prize for the winner: a library of 80 classic Puffin Books. That’s enough to keep even the most avid of readers occupied for many weeks!

The collection includes iconic titles including Matilda, Stig of the Dump, Artemis Fowl and Charlotte’s Web

What’s more, one of Puffin’s best illustrators will join the judging panel to help select the lucky winner, who will see their winning design grace the cover of an upcoming edition of The Big Issue.

The magazine will no doubt brighten the day of our subscribers as well as adding delightful colour to the shelves of Sainsbury’s, McColl’s, Co-op, WH Smith, Asda, Morrison’s and Waitrose stores, while vendors are temporarily off the streets. And it will play a vital role in helping us support vendors through this difficult time.

We launched our Spring Cover Competition in a bid to help kids stay entertained and keep their creative juices flowing during lockdown. And, with our annual Christmas Cover Competition receiving hundreds of entires every year, we’re anticipating a tidal wave of bright and brilliant entries.


Entrants can take inspiration from The Gruffalo illustrator Axel Scheffler, who this week collaborated with The Big Issue to bring readers an exclusive cover featuring characters from his books with Julia Donaldson celebrating ‘Covid Crusaders’. 

How to enter

The Spring Cover Competition is open to children aged 12 and under. The theme is HEROES.

The design could be based around the NHS, community champions delivering food parcels to those most in need, or simply a favourite superhero who is inspiring kids through lockdown. We encourage kids to get creative and imaginative with the theme!

Entries need to be emailed to (marked Spring Cover Competition) – but you can also share them on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter to help spread the word. Why not challenge friends and siblings to enter too?

Entries must be A4 in size (210mm wide x 297mm high) and a high-quality scan or photograph. The closing date has been extended to May 29.

Good luck!

Discover more about how Puffin is celebrating 80 years of inspiring children to dream big in 2020 by visiting, and follow Puffin on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.