Top marks for pupils at Oldham Choral Speaking Festival

PUPILS from schools in Shaw and Royton have earned top marks in the 35th annual Oldham Choral Speaking Festival.

As previously reported in the Correspondent, youngsters from Rushcroft Primary, Trent Road and Blackshaw Lane Primary, impressed at the Oldham Metro Rotary Club hosted event in March.

Now they have received their prizes at a special presentation event at Oldham Coliseum attended by VIPs including District Governor Rotary District 1285 Anthony Graves, Rachelle Carter and Amelia Clayton from sponsors Madeleine Lindley Books, Susan Wildman, acting chief executive Oldham Coliseum and international adjudicator, Ann Warr.

Ms Warr said: “Standards in 2019 are, as ever, still improving which is wonderful to see.

“It is a great tribute to organisers and teachers that children can learn to love the English language and poetry in particular and they can have the opportunity to perform on the Coliseum Theatre stage.

“Overall, it is clear the children had worked really hard in preparation but then took great delight and had good fun in giving their performances.

“Drawing 2,300 pupils from some 27 schools across Oldham, this was another very successful Festival which brings credit to the pupils, their teachers, the schools and the town.”

Blackshaw Lane Year 5 pupils picked up the Audrey Carter Trophy Year 5 for their poems: ‘The Headteacher’ (by Megan Leeks and Jake Clarke) and ‘Hanging with Hotdogs.’(written by the children)

The commendation read: “The children, with their head teacher, produced two poems of quality.

“Not only that but one required knowledge of Alfred Noyes’ the Highwayman together with an understanding of the unique rhythms of the poem. The second piece, written by the children on their own, was full of fun but still well written.”

Oldham Metro president Jack Wild presented the trophy.

Rushcroft’s Year 3 children received a ‘special commendation’ from the adjudicator for their reading of Roald Dahl’s ‘The Dentist and the Crocodile.’

The citation read: “A good choice of programme and excellent story telling particularly with the Dentist and the Crocodile.

“The choir listened to and co-operated with one another, their words always clear to the audience.”

Metro president Jack Wild said: “The Festival certainly fulfilled its aims of promoting confidence in the spoken word, of sponsoring teamwork and enhancing community cohesion.

“We in Oldham Metro have been proud to facilitate this opportunity for the children and this spectacle for the town.”

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