Ellesmere College students have beaten competition from thousands of rivals across the country to finish in the top three, and take highly commended spots, in a prestigious writing competition.

Year 13 student Amber Coxill finished third in the National Flash Fiction Youth Competition, organised by the University of Chester, while fellow students Leo Buckle, Year 12, and Alixandra Heasmer-Jones, Year 11, were highly commended.

Amber’s composition ‘Thursday’ was an emotive story about a couple’s life journey after their chance meeting in a cafe.

Leo’s composition ‘Shopping’ also pleased judges, while Alixandra’s story ‘The Games’ earned recognition.

Daniel Bottom, head of English at Ellesmere College, praised the talent of the students who had performed so well in the prestigious competition.

He said: “The National Flash Fiction Youth Competition is the most prestigious competition of its kind in the country and attracts thousands of entries from across the United Kingdom.

“Many congratulations to Amber for taking third place – a tremendous achievement – and to Leo and Alixandra who also did exceptionally well to receive the accolade of Highly Commended.

“There are guidelines for the competition but entrants are allowed plenty of scope in deciding what they write about. It requires a great deal of thought and talent to tell a story in just 350 words.

“Amber’s story was a touching, bitter-sweet composition which captured the excitement of finding love, a couple’s life journey together and the despair of the situation when things finally start falling apart. Quite an achievement in 350 words.

“Writing competitions are a good learning experience for students, encouraging creative talents and giving them confidence to share their ideas and inspirations for consideration by a panel of acclaimed literary judges.

“We are delighted with the success of our students in this competition - an achievement which will stand them in good stead in the future.”

Amber’s composition can be read at https://www1.chester.ac.uk/english/flash/national-flash-fiction-youth-competition/thursday-1.