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Literary speaking

Over 3000 Bootle children took part in the first ever Bootle children’s literary festival, and event organised by Ykids – a Bootle based childrens charity.

The festival hosted a variety of events which saw 10 childrens authors, illustrators and poets visit local schools and 500 children from 17 schools take part in a two day ‘Word Fest’, designed to capture the imagination and promote literacy.

Headlining the events were renowned Toxteth poet Levi Tafari along with prize winning local authors Alan Gibbons, Tommy Donbavand, Bali Rai, Tom Palmer, Dan freedman, Fiona Dunbar, Steve Barlow and Steve Skidmore and local Rap artists Jamie Broad and Outcast Youth.

Children were treated to performances of poetry from Levi, Rap from Jamie and story from Alan. They then had the opportunity to work with the artists and authors on creative workshops exploring words, rhyme, rhythm and story.

“Sometimes the perception of literacy can be so boring but this has been really exciting”, said one teacher.

The event was also an opportunity to launch a new poetry book written by children in Bootle. ‘If I ruled The World’ was the result of a competition held during the summer term and judges worked through hundreds of entries before deciding on the final 40 poems to include.

Winner, Chloe Roberts from Our Lady Star of the Sea read her winning poem ‘ Starfish’ to the assembled schools. In addition to copies of her poem in print, she wins £100 in theatre vouchers and a free author visit to her school from Smartie book prizewinner, Alan Gibbons.

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