Thousands of fantastic entries were submitted to Jon Cruddas MP's Christmas Card Competition from local schoolchildren across the constituency this year. After much deliberation, Jon was able to choose the winners, and on Friday 5th December he invited them to his presentation event and awarded them their much deserved prizes.
The event was held in the Dagenham Civic Centre and saw an excellent turnout of young winners, parents and guardians, teachers and sponsors from the local business community.
Winners and runners up from each participating school were awarded an assortment of gifts including teddy bears, chocolate, dvds, advent calendars, entertainment vouchers and Dagenham & Redbridge FC tickets. All winners and runners up also received a certificate from Jon Cruddas MP for Dagenham and Rainham and Member of the Shadow Cabinet.
Other prizes for special designs included a karaoke machine, ribbon glitter sticks and a crystal rainbow pack. William Bellamy School was also awarded a dinner for two people at a local restaurant for having the most entries and two tickets for any home game at West Ham Utd were given to William Ford Church of England School.
The schools that participated this year were:
Trinity School, Marks Gate Junior School, William Bellamy Primary School, Warren Junior School, Brady Primary, Rainham Village Primary, Marsh Green Primary School, La Salette Catholic Primary School, St Alban's Catholic Primary School, Leys Primary School, Parsonage Farm Primary School, Newtons Primary School, Beam Primary, William Ford Church of England School.
This year's overall runner-up was Mia Rwapunga from Marsh Green School in Dagenham, who chose as her prize, a Samsung galaxy phone and a £50 retail voucher. However Jon Cruddas found himself so overwhelmed by the quality of this year's entries that he was unable to choose just one overall winner and so picked two joint winners. Love Williams from Marks Gate Junior School in Dagenham chose a Sony Experia smart-phone, a tablet PC and £25 retail voucher, whilst Kareena Thind from Brady Primary School chose a tablet PC, a toy bow and arrow and a £25 voucher.
Mr Cruddas commented: "It has been an absolutely phenomenal year of entries- the most ever since I started my annual competition. Each year I face both the hardest decision of the year, and the most enjoyable one, when I have to pick from all of the outstanding entries from the thousands of local kids taking part. In fact this year there were so many wonderful designs that I simply couldn't pick just one winner.
"We had such a great turnout at the presentation event- so many schools have taken part this year and it's fantastic to see all of the local businesses supporting them.
"I am so grateful to all the businesses that got involved and helped us to make the competition happen. With their support we were able to rightly reward our talented youngsters with the prizes they deserved."
Businesses that supported the Christmas Card Competition this year include: LibertyCredit Union, Southern Housing Group, Rainham Steel, Nicholas James Jewellers, Mulalley, Motex, London City Airport, Ford, West & Coe, Port of London Authority, Right Choice Insurance, Woollens Estate Agents, West Ham United, Thompsons Solicitors, Tesco, Dagenham & Redbridge FC, C2C and Kusadasi Taverna.
Photographs of all the winners can be found on Jon's FaceBook page: https://www.facebook.com/JonCruddas