6 March 2018

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Penwortham Priory Academy student James Mumford hopes his writing skills will take him to the top of a national competition.

Priory students are taking part in Radio 2's 500 Words, which is the biggest short-story competition for children in the world.

The winner of the competition will win Chris Evans' height in books - plus 500 books for the school.

Priory's students put pen to paper in a bid to firstly impress English teacher, Mr Wall who chose his winning entry, with a number of the short stories now being sent off to the national competition.

"It was a hard choice as there were so many quality entries and I had to read some of them four or five times," said Mr Wall. 

"The BBC competition is looking for a strong plot and James provided this. He has the vocabulary most adults would envy and he is excellent at English. He is a superstar and his short story was very good."

James, 12, said it took him a couple of months to perfect his 500-word story, which won him £100 from the school.

"My idea was of an alternate world in 1966, 20 years after the end of the Second World War, and it was based on what life was like if the Nazi's had won the war through the eyes of a little girl and her father.

"Most people think they are living normal lives and do not see anything wrong in persecution and it's exploring that and how can people not notice?

"I enjoy history and I had to do a bit of research and at first I wrote too many words and the hardest bit was cutting it down but I got there.

"I was really happy when Mr Wall said I had won the Priory competition and it's exciting that my entry will go through to the national competition."

The 500 Words Final will be broadcast live from Hampton Court Palace on BBC Radio 2's Chris Evans Breakfast Show on Friday 8th June.