On Wednesday, 2nd March, the English department hosted novelist, journalist and broadcaster Terence Blacker to judge the 2016 Wellbelove writing competition for Sixth Form and Fourth to Fifth Form respectively.

Named in honour of Archie Wellbelove (01-12) who tragically died in December 2012, the prize was set-up in 2014 to celebrate Archie’s passion for writing and literature. Archie had shown a great love for English whilst at School, and was studying for a combined degree in English at Warwick University at the time of his death.

The competition is an exciting part of the English department’s calendar and annual entries are of an extraordinarily high calibre, for both analytical, discursive and creative pieces alike. Entrants had a possibility of three questions to write on in relation to a text they had independently read.

The evening began with a creative writing seminar with Terence Blacker who answered questions from 30 interested English students at a popular event that has formed an annual part of the annual proceedings. The evening progressed as competitors and their families gathered alongside staff and friends in the Langham Pavilion. The pupils offered some fascinating insights into their creative processes and discussed their inspirations and influences with great confidence. Mr Blacker awarded the Wellbelove prize to Ben Sporton for his essay on R.J. Palacio’s novel ‘Wonder’, with highly commended places going to Thomas Byrne and Ben Watson.

The evening was enjoyed by all and we are looking forward to the entries in next year’s competition!

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