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Poetry competition celebrates city's hidden rivers

The public are being asked to submit haikus for a new project that hopes to shed light on the River Sheaf.

FINAL Platform 5 Poetry Competition for Twitter

The Sheaf and Porter Rivers Trust have launched a poetry competition to celebrate a new project revealing hidden sections of the River Sheaf under Sheffield station.

The 'daylighting' project will see a metal grille built in the floor of platform 5, allowing the public to see the culverted river which flows underneath the station.

It will also bring daylight into the river for the first time in hundreds of years, which campaigners hope will encourage salmon to follow the Sheaf upstream from its confluence with the Don.

Three haikus from members of the public will be engraved in plaques around the new grille, the result of a competition that closes at midday on Tuesday 4 May.

"We have been really keen to have local residents of all ages get involved in this competition," said charity trustee and artist Cathy Spiers.

"It gives people a personal way of re-connecting with the hidden rivers, Sheffield's heritage and an opportunity to be part of something that will last for generations to come."

The trust are especially keen for more young people to enter their poems, which must have the 5-7-5 syllable structure of a haiku and be based on the theme of the Sheaf and Porter rivers.

The judges for the competition include children's author Berlie Doherty for the 11-and-unders, writer Debjani Chatterjee MBE for the 12-17 category, and broadcaster Ian McMillan for the adults.

The Trust hope to complete the platform 5 project by July using Sheffield steel, and the winners will be invited to unveil their haikus at the opening ceremony.

"Although the deadline is 4 May, we would still encourage entries, especially from children," said Cathy Spiers. "We can’t wait to read your fantastic haikus!"

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