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Creativity flows through Mayor’s river poetry competition

News release 10103, published on 02 Feb 2022
The winners of the Mayor’s poetry competition inspired by the River Loddon have attended a special presentation ceremony.

The competition, which ran in December last year, invited young poets to celebrate the borough’s chalk stream through verse and aimed to bring children closer to nature and to encourage them to treasure the local environment.

The six judges with the difficult job of choosing the winners from 140 entries from all across the borough were the Mayor Cllr Onnalee Cubitt, award-winning poet Vic Pickup, publicist Atalanta de Jersey-Lowney, English teacher Jean Elliot, English teacher Chris Fielding-Smith and bestselling author Lucy Jones.

The winner of the age five to seven category was Arya Lee with second prize going to Percy Judge. Freya topped the age eight to 11 category with Felix Bush the runner up. In the 12-16 age group Brin Bowers took first prize with second prize awarded to Lucy Blatchford.

The winners in each category were presented with an iPad Air and the runners up a £100 book token by the Mayor and prize winning poet, Vic Pickup, at a ceremony at the Civic Offices on Saturday 29 January.

Vic will also deliver a special creative poetry workshop at Cranbourne School, which submitted the highest number of entries to the competition.  

Mayor of Basingstoke and Deane Cllr Onnalee Cubitt said: “The quality of the entries we received for this competition was incredible and made it really tough for us to decide on the winners. We were blown away by the poems, particularly the emotion they conveyed, the interpretation of the themes and the range of styles that were submitted.

“I want to thank everyone who sent poems in, we really did enjoy reading them all. I’d also like to thank everyone who helped to run the competition, especially the judges for their time and expertise.”

You can read the winning poems on the Mayor’s webpage here: https://www.basingstoke.gov.uk/mayor-poetry-competition

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