Wednesday was adjudication night for competition 2 ‘Writing an Article for publication based on a Natural or Man-made disaster. Adjudicator Alex Meikle led the proceedings.

It was encouraging the ten entries were all good quality making it difficult for him as the adjudicator. He advised the members however when writing an article that a couple of points help to create the winners. The first being that any event written about should have references on the story to the sources of information and clearly cited. The second point he raised was if at all possible articles should nearly always have photos to accompany them. If the article written about is pre-photography then an illustration or similar photograph could be applied with a caption adding value and visuals to the article written.

The prizewinners were as follows:

  1. David McKelvie:  The Harrow and Wealdstone Disaster
  2. Anne Pettigrew:  Summerland
  3. Helen Heffernan:  The Great Lisbon Earthquake 1755
  4. (Honorable Mention) Isobel Watt:  Venice Submerged
  5. (Honorable Mention) Anthony Watt:  One Face of Antioch

After our cup of tea and thanking Alex for his adjudication our three winners read their entries to the group.

David collecting his prizewinner's trophy from adjudicator Alex Meikle

David collecting his prizewinner’s trophy from adjudicator Alex Meikle

David’s winning story was a very descriptive and hard hitting article about the famous rail disaster where three trains crashed at Harrow and Wealdstone station at morning rush hour one October morning back in 1952. He had accompanying photographs of the three trains.

Summerland was read by Anne Pettigrew about the horrific disaster on the Isle of Man in August 1973. It was a harrowing story started of by someone Anne had met many years previously who had been burnt in the fire. Her story highlighted the disregard for the victims and how this story has been kept very low key in comparison to other disaster such as Hillsborough etc. that have had major media coverage.  Their were a lot of serious errors in the construction of Summerland and yet to this day no-one has been held properly to account. A very well written article.

Anne Pettigrew receiving her certificate for 2nd Place with Summerland

Anne Pettigrew receiving her certificate for 2nd Place with Summerland

In third place Helen Heffernan read her article ‘The Great Lisbon Earthquake 1755’  Once again excellent story recounting the death and destruction that has been named in history as one if the most devastating earthquakes ever. The 8.5 to 9.0 magnitude quake destroyed most of the city with fissures opening in the ground five metres wide. The city was alight building being destroyed and then the tsunami hit. An estimate of between 10,000 and 100,000 people were killed in Lisbon alone.

As you can see – three totally different stories, all well written and interesting.

Helen receiving her certificate for 3rd place with her excellent article about the Great Earthquake of Lisbon

Helen receiving her certificate for 3rd place with her excellent article about the Great Earthquake of Lisbon

Could you write stories like this? Why not come along and visit Greenock Writers’ Club. We’re a friendly bunch all with a keen interest in storytelling.







Our Adjudicator – Alex Meikle is a self published author. His first novel is available online at Amazon here

Alex Meikle - Author

Alex Meikle – Author

Deception Road
Top Mi5 agent Eddie Macintyre and his team are tailing a terrorist cell in Glasgow when a van carrying alQaeda activists on a dummyrun explodes in the citycentre, causing mass casualties. Hours earlier Eddie’s team had confirmed the van as being explosives free. Now he faces the terrifying possibility that his team’s surveillance operation has been sabotaged via an alQaeda infiltrated mole. But suspicion quickly fastens onto Eddie and he is catapulted down a nightmare road of treachery and deception, and Eddie must use all his experience and resources to survive.