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QE Student Reaches Final of Betjeman Poetry Prize


Year 8 Pupil was Shortlisted from Thousands of Entries Across the Country

Crediton, Friday 11 October, 2019: Year 8 student Vlad Mototolea reached the finals of the Betjeman Poetry Prize. Vlad was one of only six finalists in the country, shortlisted from thousands of entries, and received ‘Highly Commended’, for his poem My Place.

Founded in 2006, on the centenary of former poet laureate Sir John Betjeman’s birth, the Betjeman Poetry Prize is a writing competition that invites entries from 10 -13 year olds across the British Isles, who must write on the theme of ‘place’.

Vlad travelled to London, with his family and teacher Amanda Middlemost, to receive his certificate from Wendy Cope, at the annual awards ceremony held at St Pancras Station. Vlad also won £50 and an invitation to attend a Poetry Camp.

His teacher, Amanda Middlemost, said; “We are hugely proud of Vlad for his efforts and subsequent recognition, which is very well deserved. Congratulations Vlad! It was a pleasure to attend the awards ceremony with Vlad and his family. Special mention and well done to Vlad’s fellow Year 8 students Hannah Kingdom and Isaac Olsson, who also made the final 50.”
Vlad’s poem will now appear in the Betjeman Poetry Prize’s annual anthology.

My Place
To wake up to
Hear the
Everlasting beep of the horns
Constantly smelling the sweaty workers
And every now and then the
Pong of the street men
In the door of the shops
The smell of my gran baking
A freshly caught tray of fish
Longing for dinner and sleep
Offensive language
Flying from the streets
Removing the skin of
Oranges and getting
My fingers dirty
I dream
Another day I scream
Vlad Mototolea (12)


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