Award-winning schoolgirls tell Peter Andre and London what is great about Redbridge

Three Redbridge schoolgirls received awards from popstar and children’s author Peter Andre yesterday after telling London what is great about Redbridge.

Savannah Adams and Preena Patel, year nine students from Park School for Girls, Park Avenue, Ilford, and Romesa Rono, 8, of Apex Primary School, Argyle Road, Ilford, were among 20 lucky students to submit winning entries to a literacy-promoting competition.

Welcome To My Borough, organised by London Mayor Boris Johnson and Transport for London (TfL), encouraged pupils from over 200 schools in the capital to write about where they live.

They were rewarded with a trip to City Hall where they received their awards, took part in Olympics-inspired games and saw their entries on public display.

In her submission, Savannah wrote: “I live in Ilford – it’s not filled with glamorous apartments and tall glass offices, I suppose there a few here and there, but one thing Redbridge doesn’t lack is culture.

“I bet you didn’t know that one of the best specimens of the mammoth was found in Ilford and it can now be seen in the National History Museum.”

She also praised Valentines Mansion in Ilford, The Exchange Ilford (“the local teen hot spot”), and the Winston Churchill statue in Woodford Green.

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Preena wrote of what she’d learned about Britain’s Second World War leader while Romesa chose Valentines Park, Ilford, as her favourite part of Redbridge.

Elizabeth Gallagher, headteacher at Parks School, said: “Getting involved in the competition widened the girls’ knowledge about the history of the borough.”

Peter Andre, author of children’s books including A Happy Birthday Party, said: “The stories the winners have come up with show what great imaginations they have.”

The competition was part of the Big WoW or Walk Once A Week, a TfL initiative supported by Redbridge Council, which encouraged pupils to walk around the borough.