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Word Up

Young Poet Laureate winnerWord Up!

Introducing Worcestershire's Third Young Poet Laureate

The winner of the Third Worcestershire's Young Poet Laureate was announced at the competition's grand final on Sunday, March 24.

Worcestershire County Council's search for its latest Young Poet Laureate began in October 2012, involving over 30 local young people catching the poetry bug and entering the 'Word Up' competition. 'Word Up' is open each year to young people between the ages of 13 and 19 who are resident in, or attend school, college, university or youth club in Worcestershire.

Tension had been prolonged when the event had earlier had to be postponed. However, this was all forgotten when Holly Perrett, aged 18, from Malvern, was crowned as the County's Third Young Poet Laureate. Holly beat 14 other finalists to win the prestigious title.

Holly performed her winning poems, The Weight of the Stars  (PDF 259 KB) and The In-between  (PDF 93 KB), to the live audience and panel of judges. The judging panel comprised 3 council officers, Julie Andrews (Children's Services), Ruth Foster (Libraries and Learning), and Steve Wilson (County Arts Officer), plus professional poet Matt Windle.

Worcestershire County Council's Head of Heritage, Arts and Music, Debbie Birch, presented Holly with her trophy.

Debbie said:

"I was really impressed by the range of styles and subject matter in the writing and by the energy and authenticity in the performances. It's a privilege for the Council to be able to provide a platform for such breadth and depth of poetic talent in our young people and I look forward to seeing Holly starting her year as Young Poet Laureate, inspiring others to do the same."

As Worcestershire's Young Poet Laureate, Holly will now take on the responsibilities associated with the role, including acting as a poetry champion to encourage and inspire others to enjoy poems, writing poems to celebrate special events in Worcestershire, and performing at literary events. One of her first appointments will be to perform at an event celebrating the announcement of the winner of this year's Worcestershire Teen Book Award, which is due to take place at County Hall on Tuesday, April 23.

Holly said:

"It was great to take part and especially to hear and read other young people's poems. Winning was definitely a big confidence boost as I've never really shown other people my poems before and it showed me that poetry doesn't have to be solely a private or therapeutic tool - that sharing them with others can be rewarding too. I would definitely encourage other young people who write not to be afraid to share their work and to enter events like this."

The two runners-up, who were both commended for fine efforts with their poems, were Georgia Higgins, aged 14, from Redditch, and Ryan Gallagher, aged 17, from Wolverley near Kidderminster.

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This page was last reviewed 24 July 2013 at 14:10.
The page is next due for review 20 January 2015.