News and Events

Budding Young Writer Scoops Prize!

Handcross Primary School in Handcross village, Hayward Heath were celebrating this week, when one of their pupils was revealed as the winner of a national competition for young writers.

MOTO’s Young Writer Competition asks pupils from its network of adopted schools across the country to choose from a selection of story starters and use them to write their own story of 200 words or more. The competition received over 700 entries from 17 schools and author Maria Farrer had the unenviable task of picking the winner.

After much deliberation she chose Lighthouse by Odilja Pula from Handcross, the adopted school of Pease Pottage service station as the winner.

Judge Maria Farrer said:

“I had terrible trouble choosing a winner because there were winning parts to every single story. I loved getting caught up in the plot, the intrigue and the atmosphere of the stories. Some were happy, some sad, some mysterious and some scary. Imagination can take us to so many different places! Odilja‘s story kept me hooked from beginning to end and was a very worthy winner but I would like to say congratulations to everyone who entered and keep on  writing!”

Odilja wins a £50 WH Smith voucher for herself as well as an enormous £2,500 towards outdoor play equipment for her school.  Four runners-up from three different schools;  Willand Primary School in Tiverton, Firfield Primary School in Donington Park and Bexton Primary School in Knutsford (who had two runners up) all receive a £50  WH Smith voucher and £1,000 worth of books for their school from Oxford University Press.

Maria, who has written books for children of all ages from picture books to young adult novels will visit Handcross Primary School on March 22nd to meet Odilja and talk to pupils about being an author.

Sharon Bondonno Headteacher at Handcross said:

 “At Handcross Primary school we have been working hard on developing the children’s writing skills and have a large number of talented writers throughout the school. I am very pleased and proud that Odilja’s story was selected from hundreds of entries to win the top prize. She is a worthy winner, showing a skilful command of language, plot and character. Odilja has the creativity and talent to become a successful author in the future and we are delighted she has had her first national success at our school!”

Pictured above left to right is Author and judge Maria Farrer, competition winner Odilja Pula, and Sharon Bondonno, headteacher of Handcross Primary School