Dark Skies Competition Winners

As part of our Dark Skies Festival in February, we ran an art competition for children, challenging them to create a piece of art inspired by our dark skies.

We had some amazing entries and it was very hard to choose a winner. Congratulations to Ruairi and Illona Rose Armstrong on winning the top prize: a mini stargazing kit and the opportunity for your school to borrow our new Dark Skies loans box.

Here are the winning artworks, along with our highly commended entries. Thank you to everyone who took part.


Our joint winners were brother and sister Illona Rose Armstrong, age 3, who attends Ponteland Primary Nursery and Ruairi Armstrong, age 5, who attends from Ponteland Primary School.

Their mother Shona writes,

“The children always look for Sirius as it is easy to pick out and Ruairi has loved the idea of the Dog Star since he was a tot. When he was about three he used to call it Shiny Dog and made up all sorts of stories about the adventures of Shiny Dog and his friends.  So making this constellation with his sister was lovely, giggling and making up shiny dog stories.”

Ruairi also submitted his own Dark Skies art project, a solar system.

A small girl and boy hold up a illustration of a star constellation and a model of the solar system.

Highly Commended Entries

This artwork was made by Amy Rhodes, age 5, who attends Westmoor Primary School.

A childs illustartion of a space rocket and stars.

Frankie Shaw, age 6, created a dark skies themed stage and puppet show.

Carboard models of the Moon, Saturn and a Rocket.

This art inspired by the night sky is by Grace Smith, age 9, who attends Valley Gardens Middle School Whitley bay. It wascreated using paint sticks and eco glitter.

A childs illustration of a swirling galaxy.

Martha Smith, age 6, who attends Coquet Park First School Whitley Bay sent us her picture of the night sky created with chalk, paint sticks and eco glitter.

A young girl holding up an illustration of the solar system.

Sofia Robinson, age 11, who attends Cragside C of E First School in Cramlington sent us her dark skies artwork of St Marys lighthouse made from recycled materials.

A child's handmade model of a lighthouse at night.

William Davidson, age 6, who attends Ponteland Primary School submitted his solar system illustration created using felt tip pens.

A photographs of two young children with one holding an illustration of the solar system.