Writing contest will be using history to inspire children

City Museum in Portsmouth
City Museum in Portsmouth
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CHILDREN are being challenged to let their imagination run wild with prizes on offer for the most creative stories.

City Museum in Portsmouth has launched a 500 Pompey Words competition for children aged seven to 14 asking them to create a short story inspired by the objects on show in its current exhibition.

More than 100 items are on show in the free ‘A Hard Choice’ exhibition ranging from stuffed birds and animals to a Second World War bomb, along with a whole host of pictures, drawings, pottery, and furniture.

Stories can be as realistic or as far-fetched as the author decides and can include current celebrities or historic figures. The rule is that they are original pieces of fiction and include at least one object from the exhibition.

Councillor Linda Symes, Portsmouth City Council’s cabinet member for culture, leisure, and sport, said: ‘It is fantastic that City Museum has created this competition to use our current exhibition as a source of inspiration for children.

‘This encourages children to write and visit museums, two activities which can only benefit them in the future and is a great way to motivate them to read and write in a fun way, which will help towards their literacy skills at school and aid their development.’

Winners in two age categories will receive £30 of book tokens with two runners up in each group also getting £15 book tokens.

Local authors are among the judges and the winners and runners-up will also win a group writing workshop with A Hard Choice’s writer in residence Aoife Mannix.

The competition is open to schoolchildren from Year 3 to Year 9 who live in Portsmouth.

Stories must be no longer than 500 words and must be submitted by midday on Tuesday, June 30.

Winners will be announced at an awards ceremony at City Museum on Saturday, September 12.

Entry forms and more information is available by visiting the website which can be found at portsmouthcitymuseums.co.uk