Shropshire Star

Shrewsbury school celebrates namesake war hero's birthday - with project involving Spitfire planned

A Shrewsbury school has celebrated the birthday of its namesake as part of a week of celebration.

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Monday, March 18 marked the 131st birthday of First World War soldier and poet, Wilfred Owen.

Owen was born in Oswestry and died in battle in France at just 25 years old, only seven days before the conflict was brought to an end.

His mother received the telegram informing her of his death on Armistice Day, just as the church bells in Shrewsbury were ringing out in celebration.

To mark the poet's birthday, The Wilfred Owen School in Shrewsbury has joined in a week of celebrations in conjunction with the Wilfred Owen Association.

Wilfred Owen

Trustee of the Wilfred Owen Literary Estate, Dr Jane Potter, visited the school on Monday to listen to some of the children's remembrance poems and enjoyed tea and birthday cake.

Last week, children from the school's eco council went to clean the Wilfred Owen Memorial at Shrewsbury Abbey.

After Easter, local poet Jean Atkin will visit the school to work with the children on an extra special project.

Dr Jane Potter, Dylan Wyke 9, Imogen Griffiths 10 and Ilinca Lapadatu 10

Deputy Headteacher, Sarah O'Hara explained: "Jean will come in to work with Year 5 children on a project that is really exciting.

"The children will create poems and write them up on seed paper and on the anniversary of his death, the poems will be put in a Spitfire and flown over the village of Ors, where he was buried. Then they'll be released all over the cemetery."

Sarah said the school would use the project as a "wonderful" opportunity to build links with a school in France of the same name.

The celebration coincides with the launch of new branding for the school for the first time in over 30 years.