Final chance for young Hartlepool war poets

David Worthington opposite the bomardment painting that forms part of the exhibition at the Museum of Hartlepool.

David Worthington opposite the bomardment painting that forms part of the exhibition at the Museum of Hartlepool.

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A FINAL call has gone out for young poets to enter a competition which uses Hartlepool’s past as its inspiration.

Only 24 hours remain for youngsters to enter a contest in which the Hartlepool Mail has teamed up with Hartlepool Borough Council to mark the bombardment of the town.

Once the deadline has been passed, the winning entries will be chosen in two age categories.

And the next stage will be that each winner will have their impressive work published in a brochure.

The winners will also have the opportunity to read their work out at a civic reception which is planned to be held on the anniversary of the Bombardment, which is on December 16.

To ensure people take part in the competition, leaflets have been sent to schools and colleges to encourage pupils to enter the under 11 and 11-19 categories.

To get involved, we want you to study Hartlepool artist James Clark’s definitive painting of the bombardment before writing a poem of no more than 100 words.

Themes you may want to cover include what it would have been like to have been caught up in arguably the biggest event in the town’s history. It could be that you write your poem from the perspective of one of the various types of people illustrated by Clark.

You may also want to consider the period and location of the painting or describe generally what is going on.

Clark’s painting forms part of the council’s Voices of the Bombardment exhibition which began last month at the Museum of Hartlepool.

And now that the painting has gone on public show, it is the perfect chance for children to see it for themselves before penning their entries.

David Worthington, the council’s head of culture and information, said: “We would encourage the children to come along, have a look at this famous painting and to enter the poetry competition and write a piece based upon the painting about what it would have been like to have experienced this kind of momentous event”.

The closing date is Friday, October 10, with the Mail publishing several entries before judges pick a shortlist and then a winner and highly commended entries.

Completed entries should be sent to: War Poetry Competition, Hartlepool Mail, New Clarence House, Wesley Square, Hartlepool, TS24 8BX.