‘Overwhelming’ response to Stuart Lines’ poetry competition

PUBLISHED: 17:00 14 April 2020 | UPDATED: 17:04 14 April 2020

Stuart Line Cruises' Pride of Exmouth. Picture: Daniel Smith/Vibrant Pulse

Stuart Line Cruises' Pride of Exmouth. Picture: Daniel Smith/Vibrant Pulse

Vibrant Pulse

A poetry competition launched to spark creativity during the coronavirus lockdown has attracted an ‘overwhelming’ response.

Stuart Line Cruises launched a poetry writing competition to ‘inspire hope and mental wellbeing’ at a time when many will be worrying about their isolated loved ones.

The competition was launched via the attraction’s popular monthly newsletter and Stuart Lines received around 50 entries.

Due to the high standard of entries, five winners were picked, with all of them receiving gift vouchers for guided bird-watching cruises set to take place in the autumn.

The winners were: Nina Geraghty, Kate Kingham, Sue Griffin, Rick Carter and an entry co-written by Oscar, aged nine, and Malachi aged six.

The attraction is set to post a ‘poem a day’, using the entries it has received, via its website.

Owner Jake Stuart said: “We have been completely overwhelmed by the number of entries.

“The Easter weekend would usually represent the start of our summer season but at a time when we are unable to run boat trips, we hoped this would be a good way of reaching out to our community, helping them to feel connected, engaged and to lessen the worry and uncertainty of isolation and subsequent loneliness.

“We have read some really beautiful poems; some are based on peoples’ memories of boat trips with us and their experiences of the wildlife and Jurassic Coast and others were written by young children with colourful drawings to go with them.”

“I am sure that home education is proving a very challenging aspect of this situation for so many families and it was really heart-warming to know that parents were using this as a way to engage their children in creative writing, as well as the older generations taking part.”

Lauren Clark, director of marketing for Stuart Line Cruises added: “This is an extraordinarily strange and unsettling time for everyone – we have never experienced anything quite like this before and this is something which we all have in common

“The main focus here was on encouraging people to feel connected by immersing themselves in nature and reflecting on happy memories and thoughts.”

To read all the winning entries, visit the Stuart Lines Cruises blog

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