THERE was plenty of excitement in the air at the Brewery Arts Centre for the Anne Pierson Award for Young Writers in Cumbria 2011 awards ceremony.

Winner was 16-year-old Grace Ormerod, from Sedbergh with her poem Home.

The Queen Katherine School student was presented with her £400 cheque by Helen Mort, five time winner of the Foyle Young Poets of the Year and poet-in-residence at Grasmere’s Wordsworth Trust. Judges for the 2011 award - which attracted a record number of entries from a record number of schools across the county - were dramatist Kevin Dyer, poet and literature officer for the Wordsworth Trust, Andrew Forster, and novelist Zoe Sharp.

All 15 of the shortlisted young scribes attended the event to receive feedback from the judges and to hear their well-crafted words read out by professional readers. There were two £200 runner up prizes, which went to 16-year-old Tania Clarke, from Barrow Sixth Form College, and to Ross Callow, also 16, from Ulverston Victoria High School.

This year’s competition featured a new prize created by the Friends of the Brewery Arts Centre for the most promising newcomer, awarded to Kate Wallace a student St Benedict’s School, St Bees.