Spooky Story winner announced

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Latest update 03.02.2014 14:12

The winner of the Midlands Spooky Story Competition 2013 has been announced, from over 180 entries nine-year-old Lara Hodgson was crowned the overall winner.

Lara Hodgson

Lara wowed judges with her wonderfully spooky tale of soldiers, ghosts and priest holes. Set at Coughton Court near Alcester, Lara’s story is a haunting tale of a priest who needed to escape soldiers who ‘came rampaging through the land’.

Beccy Speight, Regional Director for the National Trust in the Midlands and Spooky Story judge, said: 'I loved the start of this story – that ‘Whoosh!’ – it means that as soon as it starts, you know you are in for a good ride.  It’s very atmospheric (but not full of clichés) and I could have made the connection with Coughton Court without needing to know that was its inspiration.  It spoke of that place and its history in a really exciting way – I loved it!'

Read Lara’s full illustrated story (pdf)

Watch Lara read her story in the spooky setting of Coughton Court

Anoushka Sharma

Anoushka Sharma, aged six, was the winner of our under six category and came second in our overall competition. Sarah Deacon from the National Trust who was one of the Spooky Stories judges, said: 'Anoushka’s story was very imaginative and beautifully written, with some very poetic analogies.  I can still picture some of the images she created and really enjoyed reading it.'

Read Anoushka’s story (pdf)

Amelia Allsop

Amelia Allsop, aged 10, was the winner of our 10-12 age category and came third in our overall competition. Bali Rai, Leicester based children’s author and Spooky Stories judge, said: 'I loved Amelia's story because it was exciting and spooky at once, and the standard of writing for the age group was excellent. It hangs together perfectly, with a proper structure, and the cliff-hanger ending is quite wonderful. A thoroughly fantastic effort!'

Read Amelia’s story (pdf)

Thank you

Huge congratulations to Lara, Anoushka and Amelia and a big thank you to everyone who entered our competition. The quality of entries was extremely high and we were absolutely overwhelmed by the amount of stories we received.

Keep an eye out at a property near you for more competitions and ways to get involved.