Imaginations run free for Norwich pupils as deadline for children’s competition nears

BeWILDerwood creator and author Tom Blofeld with pupils from Norwich Primary Academy. From left, Jac

BeWILDerwood creator and author Tom Blofeld with pupils from Norwich Primary Academy. From left, Jack Ward, eight, Randall Waller, eight, Rebecca Leader, nine, Melissa Weldon, eight, and Chloe Coulsey, nine. Picture: ANTONY KELLY - Credit: Archant

A magical morning of outdoor adventures inspired a group of pupils as the closing date nears for a major schools poetry competition.

Youngsters from Norwich Primary Academy played in treehouses, and enjoyed features such as the Wobbly Wires and Muddle Maze at BeWILDerwood, the family adventure park at Hoveton, near Wroxham.

Exploring Nature is the theme of this year's EDP and Briar Chemicals Young Poets of the Year competition and Tom Blofeld, author and creator of BeWILDerwood, is a first-stage judge for the contest.

With the closing date for entries just under two weeks away, there is still time for youngsters across the region to find inspiration in the natural world.

There are two age categories: eight and nine-year-olds, and 10 and 11-year-olds. Entries should be submitted via schools, which have been sent entry forms.

Mr Blofeld said: 'As an author, inspiring children to write is simply what I'm all about.

'I've been appointed as one of the first-stage judges and I'm very much looking forward to reading all of the poetry entries and seeing how children interpret Exploring Nature from their point of view.'

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After yesterday's visit, Lindsay Pierssene, assistant head of Year 2 and 3 at Norwich Primary Academy, and literacy co-ordinator, said: 'Everyone had an absolutely fantastic time. They particularly enjoyed the Sky Maze because they had to work together as a team to find their way out.'

The final-stage judge for this year's poetry competition is zoologist and Cbeebies presenter Jess French.

The winner of each age category will receive £100 and each of their schools will receive £500, courtesy of Briar. Briar will also donate £500 to help support Miss French's chosen charity, the Sumatran Orangutan Society. The winners and runners-up will also receive copies of her book Chimp Rescue: The True Story of Chinoise.

The winners will also have the chance to spend a morning at the EDP.

The first stage of judging will be carried out by Simon Proctor, from the EDP; Anne Osbourn, from the John Innes Centre and founder of SAW Trust (Science, Art and Writing); Sarah Piercy, from Briar Chemicals; and Tom Blofeld.

The closing date for the competition is July 15.

For more information about the competition or if you are a school needing another entry form, ring 01603 242311 or email