Gower College Swansea student Taylor Williams has been awarded a place on the Hay Festival Beacons Project, a prestigious, free workshop residency for 16-18 year olds interested in writing.

Taylor is currently studying A Levels in English Language, English Literature and Media Studies at the Gorseinon Campus.

The Hay Festival Beacons Project aims to encourage creativity and forge a sense of creative identity amongst young people in Wales. It offers a unique opportunity for Welsh students to work with exceptional writers and journalists in a highly creative and stimulating environment during Hay Festival.

During the residencies, students will meet and work with professional writers, broadcasters and journalists in conversations and workshops that will explore the links between environment and landscape, art and literature.

Former participants of the Hay Festival Beacons Project have gone on to careers in creative writing, publishing and the media, including the award-winning poet and playwright Owen Sheers.

Sheers said: “Hay Festival Beacons Project was crucial for me. It not only provided me with the aspiration to be a writer but also put me in contact with a range of authors and literature that I'd have been hard pushed to find anywhere else. The Beacons Project is a must if Wales is at all serious about fostering young talent in the arts.”

Aine Venables, Education Manager at Hay Festival, said: “Hay Festival Beacons Project offers a unique, free opportunity for young people in Wales – a chance to meet and learn with a global mix of thinkers, writers and innovators. After receiving a record number of applicants from across Wales, this year’s selection should be proud of what they have achieved. We’re looking forward to welcoming them to our festival village and interrogating new ideas and new perspectives together.”

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