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2023 Year 5 Second Prize
What Happens in The Matchgirls’ Factory by Maryam

We are looked after carefully
Dipped in phosphorous
It felt really good.

But sometimes I notice a gentle
Voice then a shout.
I always wondered, “What is going on?”

A Boss
I am infuriated by these
Dumb people! They couldn’t do
a simple job, like dip
a match into the phosphorous
without spilling it everywhere!

So, I took two shillings from
The young lady.

We work ten hours a day
And I’m only thirteen. The boss just
Came and shouted at me.

So, I accidentally dropped the
Phosphorous and he took two shillings away.
(Which is probably two loaves of bread)
Will the boss ever know how hard we work?

Blue Gate.png

On 1st July 2023, a new musical composition was premiered at the Great Hall of the Peoples Palace at Queen Mary University in Mile End, to commemorate the 135th anniversary of the Matchgirls Strike of 1888.

The Matchgirls Memorial ran a schools poetry competition to celebrate the event.

Judges were Tanya Landman, Author, Dr Anna Robinson, Senior Lecturer UEL & Poet, Chris Searle, Retired Teacher, Author and Poet.

Maryam from Blue Gate Fields Junior School won Second prize in the Year 5 category with the poem, 'What Happens in The Matchgirls’ Factory'.

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