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Congratulations to Year 9 pupil, Ruqaya ER, for winning the recent HCS Poetry by Heart competition.

The contest, which this year was open to pupils in Year 9, took place last week in the Powell Theatre. Fifteen student finalists faced the daunting task of reciting their chosen poem in front of their year group. 

There was a wonderful range of poems selected and all were delivered with faultless accuracy and great sensitivity to the language. Some stand out performances included Robin H’s dramatic account of ‘The Charge of the Light Brigade’, Georgina T’s dramatic performance of ‘Divorce’ by Anna Wickham and Neirin O’s beautifully paced rendition of Edward Thomas’ ‘Adelstrop’. Ruqaya won with her recital of ‘Silence’ by Thomas Hood.


Poetry by Heart


Head of English, Mr Abbott, commented: “It was a very difficult decision to balance all the elements of verse speaking, but Ruqaya demonstrated an understanding of the language and a naturalness of tone and rhythm that drew the listener in and communicated the poem’s ideas with enormous skill and maturity.”

Ruqaya was presented with a book token and an anthology of poems compiled by former poet laureate, Carol Ann Duffy. Well done, Ruqaya!