Top Prize For Ealing Student

Poetry competition winner from St Augustine's Priory

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 Ridhi Thukral, 17 (right) with one of the judges.



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An Ealing schoolgirl has won first prize at the prestigious T.S Eliot Shadowing Prize Competition.

The awards - hosted by the Poetry Book Society in association with the English and Media Centre - are aimed at pupils aged 14-19 years old, who have a flair for poetry and an appreciation for the arts.

It's designed to encourage teachers and students to read new exciting poems, published that year but aren’t necessarily part of the National Curriculum or set text lists.

Ridhi Thukral, age 17 from St Augustine's Priory, submitted a 500 word essay in support of Daljit Nagra, a professional poet and teacher who was nominated for the T.S Eliot Poetry Prize.

The Year 11 pupil at the independent Catholic girls’ school, was inspired by the poet when he visited the school’s English department and led a poetry workshop.

She said: “Winning this award was a great way to begin 2014. I am passionate about poetry and literature and Daljit Nagra is someone who particularly inspires me. Having the opportunity to meet him at our school in 2012, strengthened my love of poetry and opened my eyes to a variety of styles and tones.”

Congratulating Ridhi on her win, Sarah Raffray, headteacher at St Augustine’s Priory said:

“Ridhi is a very accomplished pupil and we are very proud that she has received this national recognition. I would also like to congratulate the other girls at the school who entered the T.S Eliot Shawdowing Prize. Poerty is an important tool in teaching and studying English language and literature. We encourage this creative discipline at the school by inviting respected authors and poets including Daljit Nagra and Faber Poet, Tom Warner, to come and mentor the girls and share their work; it’s an approach that continues to inspire and encourage our pupils.”

5th February 2014