picture showing screwed up paper and a ring bound notepad
  1. By entering the competition, the entrant’s parents/guardians are deemed to have read, accepted, and agreed to be bound by, these Terms and Conditions.
  2. Entry to the competition is open to all young people aged 7-14 resident in Devon (excluding those from the Unitary authorities of Plymouth and Torbay and those excluded under 22) below).
  3. The closing date for entries is midnight on Thursday 28th March 2024.
  4. Entrants must write an original story, at school or at home, on a waste related theme, for example, reducing waste, rubbish, 3Rs (Reduce, Reuse, Recycle), a compost theme, ocean plastics or an extension on ‘Bonster the Hungry Monster’.
  5. Entries will be judged on several factors such as: Is the a waste related theme? Is it creative and original? Has the author used the English language well? Is there a focus on sustainability?
  6. The short story must be submitted in A4 format in portrait in 12pt or 14pt Times New Roman, Arial or Calibri font.
  7. Short stories have a word limit of up to 500 words.
  8. Schools may submit multiple entries, but only one entry per pupil will be accepted.
  9. For the purposes of judging, entries will be divided into two categories:
    • KS2 (years 3, 4, 5 & 6; 7–11-year-olds)
    • KS3 (years 7-11; 11–14-year-olds)
  10. Entries can be submitted using any of the following methods:
    • By email to recycle@devon.gov.uk
    • By post to:
    • Oliver Prato,Waste Management Team,County Hall,

      Topsham Road,


      EX2 4QD

  11. Entries sent electronically should be in Word or PDF format. If submitted from a school, file names should include the school’s name, pupil name and the year group of the pupils (e.g., Silverton_HartleyJ_Y5). Otherwise, the file name should include the young persons’ name and age: e.g., HartleyJ_10.
  12. Entries are allowed to be submitted via dictation software to ensure accessibility.
  13. The use of artificial intelligence software (AI) to write the story will mean disqualification.
  14. The winning entry and two runner-up entries will be selected for each of the age categories detailed above.
  15. In case of a high number of entries submissions may be shortlisted by an prior to judging, at the discretion of Devon County Council.
  16. The winning young person in each category will win £50 of book tokens and a reusable bag of Recycle Devon merchandise. They also win the opportunity to read out their short story and have it recorded so it can be broadcast across our social media channels, including Twitter (X), Facebook, Instagram and YouTube.
  17. The runners up will be awarded £10 of book tokens and a reusable bag of recycled goodies.
  18. The winners and runners up will each receive a framed certificate.
  19. There are no cash alternatives for any of the prizes.
  20. The winners will be announced in May 2024.
  21. Devon County Council accepts no responsibility for late, lost, incomplete, incorrectly submitted, delayed or misdirected entries.
  22. Entries will not be accepted from any children of the DCC Waste Management Team or Suez.
  23. Devon County Council will appoint a fair and impartial judging panel to judge the entries and select winners. The winners will be selected from all valid entries. In the event of either poor quality or no valid entries being received from pupils in a particular age category, the judging panel reserves the right not to award all prizes.
  24. Schools, young people (with parent/guardian permissions), and parents/ guardians must be willing to participate in surrounding the winning of the prize and consent to Devon County Council and partner organisations using the submitted short stories for publicity . Winning entries may be used to promote the 3Rs and composting through events, exhibitions, websites and publications for both commercial and non-commercial usage.
  25. The copyright of the short story belongs to the author/s but by entering the competition you are deemed to agree to grant a royalty-free perpetual licence to Devon County Council and partner organisations for the promotional purposes set out in para 24 above.
  26. Devon County Council will not be liable for any loss (including, without limitation, indirect, special or consequential loss or loss of profits), expense or damage which is suffered or sustained (whether or not arising from any person’s negligence) in connection with this competition or accepting or using the prize, except for any liability which cannot be excluded by law (including personal injury, death and fraud).
  27. The judges’ decision is final, and no correspondence will be entered into other than to notify the winning entrants.
  28. If any winning entry is deemed not to comply with these Terms and Conditions, the entry will be discarded, and an alternative winner of the prize will be determined by the judges.
  29. These Terms and Conditions are governed by English Law and shall be subject to the exclusive jurisdiction of the English Courts.

Any queries relating to this competition should be directed to: Oliver Prato, Waste Management Support Officer Email: Oliver.Prato@devon.gov.uk