KING'S College has announced the winners of its essay competition.

Children from schools across the county were encouraged to enter the competition which had a theme of 'a cabinet of curiosities'.

Writers were invited to choose three to five objects on display in a museum cabinet.

Ella Penny, from The Castle School, scooped first prize with her compelling essay focusing on her family’s history during and after the Second World War. Her essay dealt with the deportation of her grandfather and great grandfather from Latvia to Siberia, and included a number of very moving anecdotes. Ella’s chosen objects were the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact (known to many as the Hitler-Stalin Pact); a birthday note written on Siberian birch tree and sent to her grandmother on her tenth birthday, and a published collection of memories of the unfortunate victims of the Soviet-era deportations.

The judges, headmaster Richard Biggs, head of history, Jamie Bough and head of english and academic scholars’ tutor, Toby Smith, all agreed unanimously Ella’s essay was a worthy winner of the inaugural competition.

Mr Biggs said: “We were delighted with the number of entries that we received to this inaugural Headmaster’s Essay Prize. The essays made fascinating reading and we would like to thank everyone who took part. The standard was very high and we will hopefully be running it again next year. “