Our Town Children's Poetry Competition Shortlist Announced

The Poetry and Music Ensemble MGSO4 Festival surrey Ewell

After reading a fantastic collection of poems on the theme of Our Town, MGSO4 Festival judges have selected the shortlist for the children's poetry competition.
The best 17 have been chosen from almost 200 entries submitted, and are either commended or highly commended. All of the children are from four schools: Riverview, Stamford Green, St Martin's and Wallace Fields.

Each of the poets have been invited to read their entries (or, if they prefer, have their poems read) at the festival event, A Celebration of Young Poets, at Bourne Hall, Ewell on Saturday 25th June. They will be accompanied by The Poetry and Music Ensemble. (Pictured)

Judges Audrey Ardern-Jones and Jean Hall were impressed with the quality of entries, and the poems were all read aloud before a decision was made. MGSO4 Festival's literary lead, Lucy Oulton, said: "We are delighted that the poetry competition has captured the imagination of such a large number of children in schools around Epsom and Ewell and we have received a large number of very fine entries. Our judges have had to work enormously hard to create a shortlist. We are very grateful for the support of the children's teachers too. These young poets have displayed an astonishing breadth of talent both in terms of ideas and their execution and have produced some interesting, rhythmic and, at times, beautiful poetry that is very evocative of our locality. I can't wait to hear shortlisted poems performed by their writers at A Celebration of Young Poets."

Prizes and certificates will be presented by The Mayor of Epsom & Ewell, George Crawford, and representatives from Epsom Civic Society, who sponsored the competition.

Margaret Hollins, Chair of the Epsom Civic Society, said: "Epsom Civic Society is very pleased to be sponsoring the competition and we can't wait to hear the children's poems. Young people can have a very different perspective on things and it will be great to hear how the children view their town. The arts festival is a very exciting concept - something that brings the whole community together."

The shortlist is as follows:
Age 8-11 (Highly Commended)
Ilana Alford
Lily-May Carlin
Isaac Collings
Cameron Dallas
Olivia Howarth
James Knight
Matthew Wood
Sam Melrose

Age 8-11 (Commended)
Rebecca Jones
Sophie Glencross
Katie Sammon
J D Taiwo
Bruno Noël
Caitlin Armstrong

Age 6-7 (Highly Commended)
Freya Bedford
Hana Shaw
Poppy Moore

To book tickets for A Celebration of Young Poets, visit mgso4festival.org/events