School’s £1,500 win after pupil’s story is first in UK competition

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A school in Linslade celebrated a £1,500 windfall after one of its pupils won a nationwide festive story competition.

Anouk Wood, aged nine and a pupil at Linslade School – also won £50 worth of goodies for herself from competition organisers for her highly original story titled Urgent! Make Santa A New Suit.

Anouk was delighted to come first in the competition and said: “It was such an amazing surprise to be told that my story had won.

“I just thought of all my favourite red things and all the red stuff children like to eat. One idea grew into another and I came up with a recipe for Santa’s red suit.

“I love writing so I am very happy that people enjoyed my story and that it made them laugh.”

The competition was judged by top children’s author Sam Hay, who says: “Christmas inspires so many stories and clearly sparked the imagination of the children who entered. It was a joy to read all of the entries.

“Anouk’s story had amazing originality and made me laugh. Who knew the secret to making a magic Santa suit was a dollop of ketchup and some raspberry jelly.”

And Anouk’s school was on hand to congratulate her achievement.

Kate Smith, headteacher at Linslade School, said: “Everyone at Linslade is absolutely delighted by Anouk’s success with her incredible Christmas story.”

Ms Smith said the school enjoyed a public reading of Anouk’s story in their celebration assembly, with Sam Hay reading Anouk’s work by video link.

Ms Smith added: “This amazing accolade is exceptionally well timed as it coincided with our Year of Literacy and to have a national prize winning published author among our pupils is absolutely fantastic.”

“We are immensely proud of Anouk and promise to spend the £1500 she has won for the school wisely on a project linked to the planned refurbishment of our school library. We very much hope that Anouk’s success will go on to inspire other budding Linslade authors!”