Dulverton’s favourite historical fiction writer, Kate Lord Brown, was again given the impossible task of choosing the winner and two runners up for the 2023 Dulverton Exmoor Literary Festival Children’s Writing Competition.
This year there were 26 remarkable, top level entries from children under the age of 13 from right across Devon, Somerset and Exmoor. The theme for this year’s competition was to write a story of up to 500 words on farming, life on a farm – really anything to do with farms, to link with Michael Morpurgo’s love of farming and his charity Farms for City Children. See below the competition entry poster designed by Rebecca Day of The Toad Hall Company.
The entries for the Dulverton Exmoor Literary Festival Children’s Writing Competition came in from far and wide – Bolham to Watchet, Bideford to Wiveliscombe – and the winner was 6 year old Fergus Brewer from Horner, near Minhead. 12 year old Amelia Toms from Bideford and 6 year old Jack Richard from Wiveliscombe were the excellent runners up. All of them received prizes donated by Waterstones Barnstaple presented by the UK’s leading family author, Michael Morpurgo – who had just spent an hour on the festival stage chatting about his writing, farming and of course the wonderful ‘War Horse’ book, film and theatre production.
Pictured above from left to right are: Kate Lord Brown, Amelia Toms, Fergus Brewer, Jack Richards, Michael Morpurgo.
Read Fergus’ winning story here:
Bob’s Big Battle by Fergus Brewer (age 6)
Below the biggest mountain on Exmoor was a little place called Evie Farm.
It was full of wildlife and nature, but the farm was sold to a farmer who wasn’t very nice to the soil.
In the soil the microorganisms, the bacteria and fungi were having a fun time playing with each other.
The leader of the bacteria was called Bob, he was the king of the soil bacteria.
Bob is a green soil bacteria, with two small green legs and one eye with a wide smile. A friendly king who loves to play, the bacteria are invisible to humans.
While they were all playing on a sunny day, a sprayer came to the farm and the sprayer declared he would deploy his booms then travelled up and down and released the chemicals.
Luckily Bob knew just what to do.
He asked his friends the fungi to help, Bob and his fellow bacteria used the fungi to boost their strength.
Then Bob and his bacteria army headed to battle
They used their nets to capture the chemicals.
Pow, tang, whallop, urghh, kapoom
and took them deep deep deep deep underground.
And then left them there forever so they couldn’t harm the rivers, animals and soil.
The fungi and bacteria had the biggest party ever with little glow worms as their glowsticks.
The worms sang, the dung beetles played their rock and roll guitars.
People could hear them from miles around, when the party finished the microorganisms decided to take over the soil banishing the chemicals forever.
The new farmers heard their song and sent the sprayer to the scrap yard.