Ely five year old has a lesson for us all in a children’s story writing competition


A creative five year old was named star winner in a story writing competition with a tale about legends, adventure and a lesson to us all - in just 159 words.

Once, there was a chameleon. He wore a top hat and a bow tie, and liked to travel and play. Then, one day, he travelled to England. It rained and rained and rained. He came across many people complaining about the rain. He did not mind too much because he had a spotty umbrella. 'Perhaps if I spray painted all the houses in bright colours, it might cheer them up. Or perhaps if I painted all the churches yellow and the schools violet, it might make them happy,' he said. Suddenly, the rain stopped, the sun appeared, and he saw the most wonderful thing - a rainbow! It made him think. If it did not rain, there would be no trees, flowers or bees. If it did not rain, there would be no rainbows or puddles to jump in. He put on his wellies and started playing in the puddles. Soon, people started to join in. It made him smile!

Christian Hiemstra crafted his tale for the Ely 501 contest which invites young people to submit a story in 501 words or less.

David Learner said: “His story was absolutely charming and captured the spirit of what this competition is all about.

“It was an extraordinary achievement from one so young.”

The King’s Accremont pupil was picked out as a star writer in the nine and under category and was among 14 overall young winners whose stories were chosen for inclusion in this year’s edition of Ely 501.

The Chameleon Who Came To Town by Christian Hiemstra

The Chameleon Who Came To Town by Christian Hiemstra - Credit: Archant

Now in its second year the competition attracted around 150 entries from 17 schools in the area from writers between the ages of five and 13.

The competition is the brainchild of Annabel Reddick, owner of Burrows Bookshop, and Mr Learner, of Mr Simms Olde Sweete Shoppe in Ely.

Most Read

Judges this year were professional children’s writers Julian Sedgewick and Mark Lowrey.

Further details of the 2017 challenge can be picked up from Burrows Bookshop and the organisers will be visiting schools again from September.

The Ely 501 book is published this week and is available to buy at Burrows Bookshop.

• Highly Commended nine and under were Jack Grant, Mabel Jones, Isaac Kim. Winners in nine and under Hetty Guyer, Rebecca Lonnen, Nelson Cuthbert-Jacques. Star winner nine and under Christian Hiemstra

• Highly commended 10 to 13 Francis Antonio, Joseph Coppin and Jess Lonnen. Winners 10 to 13 were Emily Dulgarn, George Goodfellow, Dominic Joyner. Star Winner 10 to 13 Abigail Dulgarn.