Literary winner from Shefford crafts words for John Bunyan the prisoner

Oscar Francis West with a wax figure of John Bunyan
Oscar Francis West with a wax figure of John Bunyan

A year 10 student from Shefford who has asperger’s has won a prize in a writing competition.

Oscar Francis West, a pupil at Samuel Whitbread Academy, was one of around 100 entrants in the John Bunyan Museum Diary Writing Competition.

The competition, which is run by the museum in Bedford, is open to all students and visitors in Bedfordshire. They had to write a text as if they were John Bunyan in one of the four stages of his life - tinker, soldier, prisoner or preacher.

Oscar wrote a diary entry as John Bunyan the prisoner which was incredibly well researched. Oscar loves history and Sarah Jellis, head of learning support at Samuel Whitbread, has been encouraging him to write about it.

Oscar, who won in his age group, year 8 - 10, attended a prize-giving ceremony in Bedford on Monday, July 9, and received a £20 book token. His work will also be displayed in the museum throughout the summer.

Oscar said: “I am very proud to have participated in such a wonderful competition.”

Here is a quote from Oscar’s diary as John Bunyan:

“No force on God’s green earth shall ever make me denounce my preaching words of Christ and so I may well stay here until judgment day.”

Sarah added: “Oscar thoroughly deserved to win. It was a beautifully crafted and well researched piece of text. It was quite simply one of the best pieces of student writing that I have seen in all my years of teaching.”

Oscar said that iin future he would like to be a history writer or a curator of a museum.