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Gruffalo author inspires new generation of natural poets

Last modified: 31 October 2012

Julia Donaldson

Julia Donaldson

Image: Alex Rumford

Julia Donaldson, Children’s Laureate and author of the award-winning book The Gruffalo, has launched the RSPB’s 2012 Wildverse poetry competition for children.

The competition, in partnership with Pure and Fun Kids Radio, is open for entries from young people aged under 19. Poems can be any length, about any aspect of wildlife or nature.

Julia Donaldson, head judge of the competition, says; 'I want children to feel the wind, the rain, the sunshine, listen closely and write about what excites them.  I want to hear a story in a poem about something wonderful that they have experienced.'

Julia’s ten favourite poems will be read out on air on Fun Kids Radio between 21 and 24 December. The overall winner will receive a Pure Sensia radio system with colour touchscreen, and the runners up will receive a Pure One Flow radio so they can all listen to their poems being read out on Fun Kids.

Suzanne Welch, RSPB Head of Youth and Education, says; 'The Wildverse competition has become a really popular annual event and it’s always a treat to read through each entry and become completely absorbed in nature the way children see it.'

'There are fewer opportunities today for children to experience nature, but it’s so vital that they do in order to feel the masses of benefits that being out in nature offers and to ensure they feel the need to look after the natural world in years to come.  We hope that this will be the perfect excuse for young people to get outdoors and have an amazing time in nature that they can capture on the page.'

E-mail Wildverse entries to or send in the post to Wildverse, RSPB Wildlife Explorers, The Lodge, Sandy, Bedfordshire, SG19 2DL by Friday 23 November, 2012.

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