TWO school pupils from Middlewich have received awards for their poetry talents from education campaigner Malala Yousafzai.

Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala was the special guest at the regional prizegiving ceremony of the Mother Tongue Other Tongue competition – a national contest organised by languages consortium Routes into Languages and Manchester Metropolitan University.

The winners for the years 4, 5 and 6 entries for Spanish and French were two pupils from St Mary’s Catholic Primary School.

Malala, when addressing the audience, said: "I am honoured to be here and I would like to congratulate everyone who participated in this initiative and who wrote poetry in their mother tongue and also in other languages they are learning.

"Well done to all those getting prizes today for their achievements.

"When I came to the UK I realised how they are trying to create this multicultural environment and how learning a new language allows students and people to appreciate and celebrate diversity.

"When you are learning another language, you learn to think in that language, you learn to speak in that language and you learn to believe in that language and it allows you to think from a completely different perspective: it's not just about the words and the grammar but the culture and the language it is associated with.

"It's a skill - a talent - and I hope those of you learning a new language continue to do so because the more you learn, the broader your mind becomes and allows you to think big."