FOUR secondary school pupils from Blackburn have been listed as finalists in a spoken word poetry competition.

Ten young people will perform at the Commonwealth Voices live grand final on Wednesday, April 18, at the Mercure Blackburn Dunkenhalgh Hotel & Spa.

Umbreen Muhammad and Alicia Blake, year nine pupils at Blackburn Central High School , will perform their joint poem at the event.

Year 11 pupil Saoirse O’Neill and year seven student Oliver Brogan, both from Westholme School will also read their individual entries at the event.

The finalists were selected from scores of video entries, submitted on behalf of pupils by secondary schools across Lancashire.

Author and creative writing lecturer Dr Yvonne Reddick, chair of the shortlisting panel, said: “I was particularly impressed with the quality of the writing in these young people’s poems – there were some killer rhymes and clever word play in there.

"They have real potential as performance poets too and, for me, that was exciting to see.”