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East London teenage girls scoop St Jude's Hampstead festival 'Poetry Proms' awards

PUBLISHED: 13:00 03 August 2017

Poetry winners Charlotte Sonnex (left), Saarah Rahman and Sahbiha Saleh at St Jude's music and literary festival. Picture: Michael Eleftheriades

Poetry winners Charlotte Sonnex (left), Saarah Rahman and Sahbiha Saleh at St Jude's music and literary festival. Picture: Michael Eleftheriades

Michael Eleftheriades

Three schoolgirls from east London have won a poetry competition on social issues at Hampstead's prestigious St Jude's 'Prom' festival.

The trio—Charlotte Sonnex from Central Foundation Girls’ School in Bow, Shabiha Saleh from Bethnal Green’s Morpeth Secondary and Saarah Rahman from Poplar’s Langdon Park Secondary—beat 25 others from all over London at the annual music and literary festival’s ‘poetry Proms’ .

They put pen to paper on topics such as Islamophobia, gender equality, LGBT rights and race which they performed to a panel of top judges.

“The students tackled social issues in an honest and open way,” Susie Steyn from the competition sponsors said afterwards. “They presented their poems to a sizeable audience at the Proms festival.”

The competition was part of the Make It! programme run by Toynbee Hall foundation in Whitechapel with London schools’ resident poet Anthony Anaxagorou. The programme is the main beneficiary of the festival that has raised £800,000 for charity since 1993.

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