Friday, 7 June 2013


An Anthology by the First Story Groups at Oxford Spires Academy
Ed. Kate Clanchy
London, First Story, 2013, 65p

Today, we are launching the fourth anthology of student writing from Oxford Spires Academy, in collaboration with First Story. I am thrilled by this publication, because I have been honoured to be involved in the organisation of this event, alongside with my beautiful friend and wonderful colleague, Emma Bate.

Room is an incredible anthology, full of variety and inspiration; from the fully formed creations of our older and more confident students, to the fledgling ideas of our younger contributors. It has been inspired and moulded by our writer-in-residence, Kate Clanchy, who has offered support and guidance to the students. Room has given these young writers the chance to express themselves: as Kate says in her Introduction, there is room for them all in this little book.

This year, some of the First Story meetings have taken place in the Library, giving me the opportunity to get to know the student writers. As you might expect from a group of literary students, they are mostly quiet and reserved - that is until they put pen to paper, and suddenly they are screaming and shouting through the page. These young people are a diverse and talented group, full of ideas and feelings, anger and hope. They write about what they know, and also what they dream. Some write about politics or religion, others about relationships and family; all have something to say.

It is a privileged that we can celebrate the talent of these students through the publication of this anthology - these young writers are destined for greatness.

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