Young Writers – Celebrating Excellence

Arts Richmond launched its long running annual Young Writers Competition last September inviting every school and child in and around the borough to enter.

As in previous years, our aim is to encourage young people to express themselves, to promote creativity, nurture talent and celebrate excellence. We were delighted to have received over 600 entries from a wide variety of schools from Years 1 through to Year 11. The standard of work was exceptional, giving us a difficult task of whittling the entries down to 50 per age group and then down to the final 24 to be presented on the day.

Dr Jonathan Gibbs and a team of students from St Marys University Twickenham helped with the first part of judging, choosing the final 50 for each of our main judges Anne Beach, Guy Jones, Elizabeth Ryan and Anne Warrington. Our director Keith Wait employed 3 actors for the presentation at the Exchange on Sunday 15th March. The children and their families enjoyed watching their pieces come to life on stage, beautifully lit by The Exchanges own lighting tech Meg Hird. Winners from each age group were announced and certificates and prizes were presented by the Mayor Nancy Baldwin.

Winners were as follows

  • Cassia Mavra (year 4) Lowther Primary School for ‘The Girl: Chapter one’
  • Emily Hayman (Year 6) Queens School Kew ‘ See MeAs IAm’
  • Simone de Almeida ( Year 8) Ursuline High School Wimbledon ‘Requiem’
  • James Hunter (Year 11) St Benedict’s ‘Car Crash’

As with each year our Chair Hilary Dodman chooses two Laureates from the older age groups to represent arts Richmond for the year.Simone de Almeida and James Hunter have been chosen and will be invited to a number of productions and exhibitions though the year to review for our website and Newsletter.Visit:

by Linda Hansell

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