Winners of Young Writer’s Competition


We set the young people of Hampshire a creative writing challenge – we asked them to write a letter about a day in their life, real or imagined, in 400 words or fewer.  We chose the letter form in honour of Jane Austen, her surviving letters allow us such an important glimpse into her life and times.  It also highlights the rapid change in how we communicate with family and friends today.  An overwhelming response resulted in us receiving 303 entries from individuals and schools right across the county. 

Wonderful Hampshire based writers Ali Sparkes and Angela McAllister agreed to be our judges.  Ali said “What a fantastic spread of stories. We spent a brilliant day gasping, sighing, hooting with laughter; even welling up a little. We were quite exhausted by the end of it. Our only problem was too many really fantastic stories. I'm pretty sure we have spotted some Hampshire authors of the future”.

The ten shortlisted writers from across the two age categories were invited, with their families, to an awards ceremony and afternoon tea at the Jane Austen’s House Museum to celebrate their achievements.


Please click on the names below to read the 10 shortlisted letters.

The winning letter from the 7-11 category was written by William Hoyland from North Waltham Primary School

The runner up was Ayushi Shakya from Wallop Primary School

The winning letter from the 12- 16 category was written by Kitty Holmes from Treloar's School

The runner up was Bridget Lees from Petersfield


The Highly Commended young letter writers;


Jacob Clay from North Waltham Primary School

Esme Horley from Halterworth Community Primary School

Erin Leyburn from Silchester

Rosie Strachan from West Tytherley

Molly Winfield-Holmes from Southampton



Risa Cooper from Highclere


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