Knebworth House launches schools story writing competition

Date Posted: 23/01/2014

Children from schools across Hertfordshire are being asked to write a short story, starting with the famous line ‘It was a dark and stormy night’, as part of a writing competition from Knebworth House.

Knebworth has a long tradition of writing. Many members of the family have been authors or dramatists and many famous writers have visited the house.

Charles Dickens was a regular visitor in Victorian times, performing plays in the Banqueting Hall with his friend Edward Bulwer Lytton. Today, Bulwer Lytton is best remembered for phrases such as ‘the pen is mightier than the sword’ and ‘It was a dark and stormy night.’

About the writing competition

Taking ‘It was a dark and stormy night’ as a starting point, school children from Years Three to Six (aged seven to 11) across Hertfordshire can write a short story of up to 500 words.

Teachers can submit up to three stories from their school. 

The first prize is an afternoon school trip to Knebworth Park Adventure Playground for the winner’s whole class in June or July, including transport to and from Knebworth by coach provided by Chambers of Stevenage.

The closing date for entries is 4th April. The winning story will be printed in Hertfordshire Life.

Garden Story Trail

As part of its Inspiring Young Writers campaign, there is also a new afternoon Garden Story Trail at Knebworth to explore.

For further school trip information contact the Group Bookings Team on:


School Travel Organiser's Guide