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15 December 2017

Paul Hazlewood
Albion in the Community held the Literacy Cup.

Pupils from 12 local schools took part in Albion in the Community’s (AITC) first-ever Albion Literacy Cup.

The competition, which took place at the American Express Community Stadium, saw more than 120 pupils tackle football-themed writing tasks, including penning their own poem.

The morning sessions included a stadium tour; a poetry workshop with Paul Cookson, the National Football Museum’s official poet in residence; a literacy skills drill led by AITC’s Rob Josephs; and a mini press conference during which pupils were able to quiz Albion legend Guy Butters.

After lunch came the Premier League Writing Stars challenge, where pupils were tasked with writing their own poems based on the theme of resilience. The competition involved each school selecting one entry to represent them in the final and the pupils selected read their poems out in front of a judging panel and more than 130 people.

Schools were awarded points from each task, with the school with the highest overall total awarded the Albion Literacy Cup. St Mary’s Catholic Primary School in Portslade were the overall winners, while Nicholas Osinski and Alex Wilmott from Bramber Primary School won the prize for the best poem. Their poem, My name is Resilience, was chosen by AITC’s guest judging panel, which included Guy Butters, Paul Cookson and Albion fan and poet Attila the Stockbroker.

The event was part of the AITC’s wider work with schools across Sussex. The charity currently works with 129 schools throughout the county.

Paul Williams, schools manager at AITC, was pleased with how the event went.

He said, “We are delighted to have been able to hold the first ever Albion Literacy Cup thanks to the support of the Premier League and the National Literacy Trust.

“We specifically targeted the event at pupils reluctant to read and struggling with literacy at school, so to see them engage so well and grow in confidence as the day went on was brilliant.

“The quality of poems produced was also fantastic and we would encourage all of our local schools to get involved and submit their entries to the national Premier League Writing Stars competition.

“We very much hope this can become an annual event and are also hoping to hold an Albion Numeracy Cup during this academic year.”

The schools that took part were: Blackthorns Community Primary Academy; Bolney Primary School; Bramber Primary School; Brunswick Primary School; Eastbrook Primary Academy; Holmbush Primary Academy; Little Common School; Moulsecoomb Primary School; Seaford Primary School; St Mary’s Catholic Primary School; The Oaks Primary School; and Wisborough Green Primary School.

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