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Claire Barwood wins top prize in Poetry Competition

Photo by Johnny Bugeja.

Claire Barwood has won the top prize in this years Autumn Poetry Competition organised by Gibraltar Cultural Services and sponsored by the Chronicle.

Ms Barwood penned a poem titled 'The Rhyme of the Modern Mariner' which won the prize of the overall winner out of 230 entries.

The poem is inspired by ‘The Rime of the Ancient Mariner’ and Ms Barwood said she was surprised to have won.
“Obviously you hope to win the top prize but to [win] it's a bit of a shock when it actually happens,” she said.

This was the second time she had entered the competition and her poem is a modern day take on the work of Samuel Taylor Coleridge.

The prizes were presented by GCS CEO Seamus Byrne and judges Charles Durante and Conchita Triay, with GCS Head of Events, Giovanella Vinales presented the award ceremony.

Mr Byrne highlighted how the competition is important to the local literature scene and forms part of the Gibraltar Literature Week events.

“It’s important to be able to promote our writers, to promote our authors, to promote our poets and to promote Gibraltar’s identity through literature,” Mr Byrne said.

Mr Durante said Gibraltar is undergoing a modest renaissance in literature.

He said the poems were of an exceptionally high standard and commented on the promising entries from the younger participants.

A llanito category was included in this years’ poetry competition with nine entries.

“I would like to thank you all for your contributions to this literary renaissance-individually it may seem insignificant, but cumulatively it forms part of our new-found confidence as a people and our new consciousness as writers and creators of culture,” Mr Durante said.

The adult winner was Eduard Tara, with Runner-Up awarded to Mike Nicholls and Highly Commended to Gabriel Moreno and James McNally.

Best Poem in the Spanish Language was awarded to Daniel Francis Brancato, Runner-Up was presented to Mark Montovio, and Highly Commended to Levi Attias and Colin Golt.

Best Llanito Category winner was Dale Buttigieg, with Runner-Up Susan Cabezutto and highly commended Isabella Villa.

School Years 11 – 13 Category Winner was Eva De Vincenzi, Runner-Up was Chava Bayles and Shabaka Marie Sheriff.

School Years 8 - 10 Category Winner was Miriam Natasha Ramagge and Runner-Up was Maiah Mifsud.

School Years 6 - 7 Category Winner was Krishaa Lakhiani, Runner-Up was Adam Zbigniew Viñales and highly commended were Lilly Alfred and Maleah Marie Akuma.

School Years 4 - 5 Category Winner was Ashton John Lewis, Runner-Up was Harriet Caulfield and Highly commended were Oliver Gear and Max Jose Correia.

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