The National Young Writers’ Awards has opened with world renowned and best-selling children’s author David Walliams named as a judge for 2018.

The competition, organised by tuition provider Explore Learning, which has a centre in Borehamwood has been running for ten years, has inspired hundreds of thousands of children across the UK to put pen to paper and give writing a try. 

The theme for this year is ‘Heroes’ and children are tasked with writing a 500 word story all about their hero, whether that be their parent, a policeman or an idol they aspire to be like.

Borehamwood Times:

Since the publication of his ground-breaking first novel, The Boy in the Dress (2008), David Walliams has published ten novels, three short stories and six picture books. His global sales now exceed 23 million copies and his books have been translated into fifty-three languages.

The winner will be surprised at a school assembly by David who will announce the National Young Writer of the Year and present them with a trophy, a trip to Disneyland Paris for their family and £500 of books for their school.

The top 10 entries will also receive £250 worth of books for their schools from Letts Revision, plus a large print of the opening line of their story by QuirkyLime. Each of the regional winners will also win £50 worth of books for themselves.

Every child that enters will receive a certificate to celebrate their story, along with personalised feedback from one of Explore Learning’s tutors.

David Walliams says: “It is a real privilege to be named judge for this year’s National Young Writers’ Awards and I am so looking forward to reading what the brilliant brains of our country’s children come up with. To write is such a wonderful, creative outlet for people of all ages and competitions just like this one are a fantastic way of encouraging kids across the UK to take the leap and release their inner authors!”

Borehamwood Times:

The competition runs until April 29 and is open to all children aged four to 14, anywhere in the UK.

Charlotte Gater, head of curriculum at explore learning, says: “We are extremely proud to organise the longest running writing competition for children and over the past 10 years the National Young Writers’ Awards have encouraged children in their thousands to release their creativity in abundance.  We can’t wait to read what children put together along this year’s theme of heroes – whether that’s a hero with superpowers or an everyday hero like a parent, a firefighter, paramedic or teacher.

“We are beyond excited to have David Walliams as our judge for the 2018 competition and we know that he will help to inspire even more children to get writing for the chance to meet their idol - as well as that fantastic trip to Disneyland Paris and the wonderful accolade of being named National Young Writer of the Year!”      

 Children are invited to pick up an entry form from their local Explore Learning centre which can be found at Explore Learning Unit 12D Keystone Passage Borehamwood Retail Park Borehamwood WD6 4PR and then simply return the completed entry to them before Sunday, April 29.

Or if children prefer, they can type their story and enter online at - don’t forget to include your contact information so they can get in touch if your child wins.

Throughout the next four months Explore Learning will be providing some top writing tips from their creative writing team, previous winners, judges and best-selling authors via their website, social media and face to face.  They will also be hosting a collection of free downloadable information on their website that can be used at home or in the classroom as well as running free workshops with local libraries, schools and community groups to inspire children’s love of writing and support them with their entries.  For more information visit

For more information about the National Young Writers’ Awards visit or speak to one of the Explore team directly by emailing them on or call them on 020 3004 0096.