Two Falkirk teens have won a prestigious creative writing competition after penning personal love letters to Europe.
Arianne Burrow (14) and Louise Robertson (14), both pupils at Braes High School, were named joint winners of the ‘Message from the Skies’ competition along with Nathan Earnshaw (12), from Kirkcaldy.
The contest was run by Edinburgh’s Hogmanay 19 to celebrate Scotland’s shared cultural, historic and social connections with Europe and was open to all under 18s from across the Lothians, Falkirk, Stirlingshire and Fife.
As part of their prize, the youngster’s stories will be beamed onto prominent buildings in Edinburgh between 4.30pm and 5pm each day until Burns Night along with other poignant messages from established authors.
Louise’s letter to Flachau will be projected onto the Tron Kirk, while Arianne’s letter to France will be showcased on the walls of the Bongo Club at the Cowgate.
Nathan’s letter to Paris will be displayed on the National Monument.
Arianne said: “I had no idea I would win. I just wanted my letter to mean something, so I chose to highlight the importance of acceptance as well as the love that can be present even in the most difficult of times which I think is incredibly important.”
Louise said: “It feels amazing to be part of such an interesting project.
“The idea of projecting the letters on to buildings was so incredible to me so I was very excited to enter.
“I wrote my letter after looking through pictures of a holiday and listening to music.
“It suddenly hit me that the pictures were like little frozen memories that I could base my letter around.
“Seeing my story on such a big space where people can view it makes me feel very proud.”
Suzy Glass, producer of Message from the Skies said: “Arianna, Louise and Nathan’s winning entries will bring the voices of the young people of Scotland to the fore. “Their powerful short pieces showcase and celebrate our personal, historical and cultural relationship with Europe.
“They will light up three major Scottish landmarks from now until Burns Night, standing side-by-side with Love Letters to Europe created by critically acclaimed writers Kapka Kassabova, Stef Smith and William Dalrymple.”