SIXTH-FORM and undergraduate students from across Hampshire gathered at Winchester College on Saturday for a prize-giving ceremony and celebration of John Keats.

It is 200 years since the poet wrote his famous poem ‘To Autumn’ after walking through the water meadows next to Winchester College.

In association with the Keats Foundation and the University of Winchester, Winchester College ran an essay competition that focused on works from Keats’ ‘living year’ 1819. This was open to all local students and we were delighted by the high-standard of the entries. Students from St. Swithun’s School, Winchester College, and the University of Winchester claimed the top prizes.

The prize-giving included talks by the eminent Keats scholar and biographer, Professor Nicholas Roe, Reader at the University of St. Andrews, and Dr Gary Farnell from the University of Winchester.

After the awards, guests visited the school’s Treasury museum, which is running an exhibition on Keats and his contemporaries, before enjoying an afternoon tea.

The essay competition and prize-giving event was made possible by the generous support of The Keats Foundation, The University of Winchester, and independent bookshop, P&G Wells.

The photo shows from left, Rosanna Foster, runner up of the Undergraduate Prize, Emily Griffiths, winner of the Undergraduate Prize, Professor Nicholas Roe, Dr Gary Farnell, Reuel Armstrong, second place, Alistair Brown, winner of the Sixth Form Essay Prize, and Suzanne Mui, third place in the Sixth Form Prize Not pictured: Sarah Waters (Third place Undergraduate Prize).

Essay entries were submitted by pupils at Peter Symonds College, St Swithun’s School, Winchester College and the University of Winchester.