The quiet village of Pattingham has a pretty street called Ravensfield. On that street there is a Lamplighter who lights the lamps every night. He has been living in Pattingham as long as anyone can remember, yet not much is known about him.
He has done the job from year to year but has never asked for any money. When the authorities offered him pay, the Lamplighter turned them away. Nobody knows when he started his work but the lamps and their lighter are extremely old.
Lily was a curious girl who wanted to find out more. She began watching the Lamplighter light the lamps, then following him on his rounds. Each night though she lost sight of him in the shadows.
Lily kept tailing him for a while but soon gave up. Every time he disappeared. One thing she did notice was that the Lamplighter seemed to twinkle in a certain way and as he walked, was very graceful and smooth as if he was walking on air. It reminded her of the twinkle of a star. Lily decided it was worth one more try. She felt there was an air of mystery about him and perhaps there was more to his story then lighting the lamps.
Being very careful to stay concealed from the Lamplighter’s view, she set out again. She followed him until he reached a small hut. The sun had almost set and Lily thought she should go home soon, but she had gotten this far and did not want to give up yet.
The Lamplighter went inside the hut and gently closed the door. She ran to the door and cautiously opened it. Inside there was a ladder and nothing else, the Lamplighter had vanished up the ladder, which was ancient and rickety. Gulping, Lily plucked up the courage and started to climb.
She looked up the ladder and was amazed. It was higher than she could see! She could just make out the shape of the Lamplighter and eagerly climbed higher.
Looking down, she felt a bit dizzy. The village houses were the size of match boxes and she only had an old wooden ladder to stand on. Lily looked back up to the lamplighter who was pulling his lighting rod from his coat.
He lit the end of the rod. Then he held it out as if he was lighting something. Suddenly a star appeared brightly right where the flame had touched the sky. He was lighting stars for the night! He jumped gracefully onto that star and lit the next one. Lily was so amazed, she almost let go of the ladder!
Soon the sky was full of stars shining brilliantly. The lamplighter almost danced as he lit each star, his ageing body revived and young again.
From her vantage point descending the ladder, Lily valued the stars for their true beauty. She never forgot that vivid adventure.
“So when you see stars at night, you know the lamplighter’s been tonight.”

FOLLOW US was established in 1997, and since then we have successfully completed numerous short story and poetry competitions and publications.
We receive an overwhelming positive feedback each year from the teachers, parents and students who have involvement in these competitions and publications, and we will continue to strive to attain this level of excellence with each competition we hold.


Stay informed about the latest competitions, competition winners and latest news!