A student from Sudbury was runner up in the local final of the National Poetry by Heart poetry reading competition held in Ipswich Library last week. 

Five talented students from across the region competed in the event and each gave a passionate recital of two poems – one pre 1914 and one post 1914.

Victoria Hicks from Stalham High School in Norfolk was the outright winner and Hannah Bunting from the Ormiston Sudbury Academy in Suffolk was the runner up.

The other finalists were Bethany Hall from County Upper School Academy in Bury St Edmunds, Will Wright from Framlingham College and Matthew Skazick from Bungay High School.

Poetry by Heart is a pioneering national competition designed to encourage pupils at school and college in England to learn and to recite poems by heart.  There is more information on the Poetry by Heart website at www.poetrybyheart.org.uk

Julie Blake, Education Director of the Poetry Archive, explains the thinking behind the competition: “Competitors need to choose one poem from before 1914 and one poem from after 1914. We hope that in reading, preparing and reciting, young people will gain much enjoyment and confidence. School competitions have led to county finals and then a grand final will take place over two days in London on April 19th and 20th. The spirit of the competition is that we want students to take poems to heart not simply learn them by rote and we have been thrilled by the response to the initiative.”

Poetry by Heart is an educational initiative of The Poetry Archive which was co-founded by former poet Laureate Sir Andrew Motion.

County Library, Northgate Street, Ipswich IP1 3D

STOP PRESS: Both Hannah and Victoria will be taking part in the national final for this competition, we’ve just heard. 


Cantor’s Theatre School