Talented young poets from primary schools across Bristol, South Gloucestershire and North Somerset eloquently expressed their thoughts about travelling – in all its forms – through poetry in poems that are being published in a very special book today. The poems are the winning entries in an annual, city-wide primary school poetry competition run by Ablaze, a local education charity.

The book, ‘A Celebration of Poetry in Bristol’s Primary Schools’, is the fourth published by Ablaze and Intellect Books.  Poems by over 70 children from Reception to Year 6 are featured in the latest edition. The competition theme for this year was ‘Travel’, which really inspired the children to use their imaginations.

Once again Bristol’s budding poets let their imaginations fly – taking us to far flung places, deep into history and even into space.The poems are always of a really high quality and a real pleasure to read.” Sally Melvin, CEO of Ablaze

Judges were looking for the best poems in three categories: pupils under seven years; those aged between seven and nine; and a nine to eleven-year-old category. Winners and runners-up in each category were selected and an overall ‘best poem’ was chosen.

At Tuesday’s celebration event in the city centre, Bristol’s award-winning young poets recited their work in front of an invited audience which included proud teachers and parents, as well as the Lord Mayor of Bristol, before receiving their prizes from Bristol’s well-renowned street poet and last year’s poet laureate for Bristol, Miles Chambers. The prizes were kindly donated by local businesses, including Airbus, Rolls-Royce, National Friendly, Bristol Water, Clip n Climb Bristol, The Bristol Hippodrome, Bristol Packet Tours and Beese’s Tea Rooms.

The overall winner was Ruby Jenkinson from St Werburgh’s Primary School.  Ruby, a Year 4 pupil, recited her poem ‘Travel Through My Day With Me’ confidently in front of the invited guests, complete with actions!

Roger Opie MBE, one of the judges of the Poetry Competition, said of Ruby’s poem “Ruby’s clever and exciting words show great insight and imagination.” Jane Sawyer, SENCO at Henbury Court Primary School and also a competition judge, commented, “The poem engaged my attention and pulled me in with its rhyming and bouncy lines!

The event was kindly hosted by Clarke Willmott, one of Bristol’s leading law firms. Staff at Clarke Willmott have been volunteering for Ablaze in local primary schools for many years and were thrilled to host this exciting event again this year.

If you would like to purchase a copy of our poetry book, please email us.

Ablaze works with volunteers from businesses and other groups to raise aspirations, achievement and skill levels in young people in primary and secondary schools in the more disadvantaged parts of Bristol. Our aim is to tackle social mobility to ensure equality and inclusion. Each year more than 2,000 young people are supported by volunteers through Ablaze on a variety of programmes.