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Slade Award for an original written work by Secondary Students (Years 9 and 10)
(Commenced 1993)

2007 Winners and finalists: Mark Slade, sponsor, (left) and John Liddell , Chair Slade Commit-tee,(right) with 2007 winners and finalists, L to R: Callum Metcher, Stephanie Sprott, Gabby Jensen, Yee Ting Shiu, Andrew Roberts. (Not present: Shay Neilson, John Tran)

Each September, we hold one of the highlight evenings of the year, the Slade Literary Award Presentation. This highly enjoyable evening is to present prizes and certificates to the winners and other finalists of our annual writing competition for budding authors and poets from year 9 and 10 state secondary school students in nearby schools.

Initiated by Rotarian Henry Slade in 1993, the award was created to improve the writing skills of local young people, harness their creativity and foster interest in the written word. Henry was the Founder and Managing Director of the Slade Knitting Mills, for many years a landmark in Richmond.

The award draws on creative writing pieces from within local schools. The teachers forward the best efforts to a committee and a judging panel then selects the winners who are awarded their prizes at special dinner of the Club. At the Award evening, we always have a guest speaker from within the world of words: we have had well known authors, playwrights and journalists come and pass the benefit of their experience on to the finalists. And the winning stories are read aloud.

Because many of the schools in Richmond and the surrounding areas have a very high population of newly arrived migrants and indeed, Henry was himself a migrant, the committee has in recent years included a prize for the best entry by an student with English as their second language.

Henry Slade sponsored the award from 1993 until his death in 2006. After he died in January that year, his nephew, Mark Slade, present CEO of Slade Knitwear and The Slade Group, has generously taken up the funding of the award in memory of his uncle.

These days, because of changes in and amalgamations of the state secondary schools, we seek entries from other state schools in nearby municipalities outside the Richmond area.

Henry Slade (right) with a group of finalists and their teachers at an award night in the early 1990s.
The prizes awarded are:

1st Prize: $200 + books,
2nd Prize: $150 + books
ESL Prize: $150 + books

The best entry from each school, if not a major prize winner, receives a Certificate of Merit.


2007 Winners

First: Stephanie Sprott, Melbourne Girls’ College: “As the River Flows”
Runner Up: Callum Melcher, Kew High School: “A Dog’s Diary”
ESL Winner: John Tran, Princes Hill Secondary College: “The Last Role”

Click here to read the 2007 winning entries.

For more information contact Rotarian John Liddell (H)9898 9792 or john@rotaryrichmond.org.au