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Story writing competition goes national

A Cornwall Council story writing competition to find the next generation of budding writers is going national.

Launched as part of the Real Heroes Read Books campaign, the competition was originally just open to children from schools in Cornwall, but due to popular demand this is now being extended to include a new competition for children outside of Cornwall.

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The rules are simple; the story must be written for small children and be no more than 500 words long.

Portfolio holder for children, wellbeing and public health, Councillor Sally Hawken, said: “I would like to thank all the creative young people that have already entered for their brilliant contributions. When we launched this competition we never expected such a reaction and we are delighted to launch the third competition for children outside Cornwall.

“It doesn’t matter whether you're an experienced writer or this is the first time you've thought about writing a story, we still want to see your story ideas.”

The competition is split into secondary and primary aged children and the best stories will be turned into a bedtime story.  There are also a host of other prizes up for grabs.

Service director children’s health and well being at Cornwall Council, Lisa Harvey, said: “This writing competition is the next phase of the campaign and we want to encourage older children to get creative. There is no barrier to imagination, the only rule is that this must be for an audience of under-fives.”

The winning stories will be read by the actor Rory Wilton, who has appeared in Poldark, Doc Martin and the Fisherman Friends movie.  The film will then be screened at our Premiere event, where the winner will be the guest of honour.

Lisa concluded: “We all want the best for our children; supporting them to take every opportunity and we can do this by supporting the development of their language skills.  Sadly, some children are starting school without these – and all too often, if there’s a gap at the very start of school, it tends to persist, and grow.

“The Real Heroes Read Books campaign is designed to inspire children into reading and using their imagination and will tackle the barriers some parents face in supporting their child’s learning, including time, confidence and ideas of things to do.

This is the first year of Cornwall Council running the Real Heroes Read Books campaign and already we have seen more children reading books. The library service saw an additional 4000 book borrows in the under-five category during the first two weeks and a massive 33% increase in the number of library sign ups, which is fantastic.

Children can enter or gain more information by visiting our website at, where you can also find the rules for the competition.