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Poppy field poem takes front page slot for Kent weekly

Remembrance Day coverage in the Kentish Gazette was marked by a front page picture of a field full of poppies – and a moving poem by a schoolboy in place of a front page lead.

Nine-year-old Jack Smith’s moving poem about life in the trenches was chosen after the newspaper ran a competition in the run-up to November 11.

The youngster comes from a poetic family – his late grandfather Paul Coltman was a published poet and his aunt Gillian McClure is a writer and illustrator of children’s books.

The paper also held a competition to design a poppy, which was won by the aptly-named Poppy Reed, aged seven, a pupil at Chartham School. Her design also featured on the front page.

Both won their families a free P & O ferry ticket from Dover to Calais from the Gazette, which covers Canterbury and district.

Kentish Gazette senior editor Bob Bounds said: “We always try to involve schoolchildren in our Remembrance coverage, to emphasise to those who are marching that the sacrifices made by their generation are being understood by future generations.”