Breckland youngsters triumph in smoke-free sign design competition

Smoke Free Competition winners, from left, front row Ruby Brown, Freya Gallant; back row Harry Willi

Smoke Free Competition winners, from left, front row Ruby Brown, Freya Gallant; back row Harry Williams, Breckland councillor Marion Chapman-Allen, Evette Graham, Eastern Daily Press reporter Bethany Whymark. - Credit: Archant

Four creative youngsters have been named as winners in a competition to design signs for new smoke-free zones in their district.

The competition was part of an initiative by Breckland Council to encourage the introduction of voluntary smoke-free zones in areas used by children.

The young winners, chosen from more than 100 entries, will see their designs converted into signs for the schools, pre-school nurseries, and town and parish councils who have signed up to the scheme to put into places such as public play areas and by school gates.

Yesterday they were each presented with an iPad mini by Breckland councillor Marion Chapman-Allen, and also received a sign featuring their own design.

The competition was supported by the Eastern Daily Press, who sat on the judging panel and attended the presentation.

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Ruby Brown, five, from Ovington, triumphed in the pre-school category; Freya Gallant, seven, from Attleborough, won the public play areas category; Harry Williams, ten, from Watton, won the primary school category and Evette Graham, 12, from Gressenhall, was the victor in the secondary school category.

Because of the high standard of the competition's entries, eight runners up were also selected and each awarded gift vouchers and presented with certificates.

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Ms Chapman-Allen said: 'Everyone who entered the competition should be very proud of their work.

'Research shows that children who see smoking as part of everyday life are more likely to become smokers themselves.

'The aim of our project is not about preventing people from smoking, but requesting them to do so responsibly, away from where children play or congregate. The children's designs get this message across very effectively. '

The signs will now go into wider production and it is anticipated that the first will appear in the district in May.

Schools, pre-school nurseries, and town and parish councils who would like a sign, but have not yet subscribed to the scheme, should contact Breckland Council officer David Osborne on 01362 656313.

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