Worcestershire's new Young Poet Laureate is announced

Published Monday, 18th January 2016

An 18 year-old from Earls Croome has been announced as Worcestershire's fifth Young Poet Laureate for 2016.

An 18 year-old from Earls Croome has been announced as Worcestershire's fifth Young Poet Laureate for 2016

Ellie Courtman is a pupil at Hanley Castle High School. Her winning poems were entitled 'The Little Match Girl' and 'The Importance of Shakespeare'.

She said: "It hasn't really sunk in yet, but I feel very honoured to be Young Poet Laureate, especially when I was up against such talented other young writers. I'll try to do as good of a job as Chloe did."

The runners up were Jodie Young aged 14 from Lower Moore, Near Pershore, and Eleanor Roberts, aged 16 from Pershore.

Twelve young people made it to the final round and 11 performed two poems each in front of an audience of friends and family at the final at The Hive in Worcester this Sunday (January 17).

The judges included outgoing Young Poet Laureate, Chloe Clarke, who presented certificates to the finalists. Other judges were Matt Windle 'The Poet with Punch' and County Arts Officer Steve Wilson. MC at the event was performance poet Spoz, aka Giovanni Esposito.

Cllr Lucy Hodgson, Cabinet Member for Localism and Communities, who presented the winning trophy, said: "It is a tremendous pleasure to be involved with the Young Poet Laureate for Worcestershire 2016.  I am continually amazed by the talents of our young people in Worcestershire, once again the standard of entries was incredible. Well done all our winners."

Natalie McVey, from the Libraries and Learning Service, said: "I cannot explain how proud I am of our young poets. The exuberant audience were spellbound by all of the performances. Some made us laugh and some brought tears but all of them made us think, and enjoy the moment that we were amongst such talented young people."

The 'Word Up' competition is open to anyone aged between 13 and 19 living in, or going to school, college, university or a youth club in the county.

This year's competition required poets to submit two poems, one on the subject of 'Light' and another on a subject of their choice.

For more information please contact Natalie McVey on 07876 144905 or Steve Wilson, Arts Officer on 01905 845754.