YOUNG musicians have competed in an annual contest.

Nine young musicians competed in the Young Musician of the Year contest held at St Mary’s Church on Thursday last week.

Returning for its sixth year, Rookwood School’s William Swinnerton was the winner of the classical category, singing a rendition of Ave Maria. William also received the Hubert Dawkes Trophy, presented by Pat West, to the youngster that shows most promise.

Meanwhile, Eddie George from Testbourne Community School won the pop category, playing guitar and singing Perfectly Fine.

Chris Lynn, the organiser of the contest said: “Thanks to John Harkin for allowing us to use his magnificent church with the finest acoustics in the town.

“Thanks to all the schools for putting in the various acts. I have heard from many of the people there they felt the standard was brilliant even better than the previous years.”

The runners up of the night were Laura Leigh, from Testbourne, on piano playing Chopin in the classical category, and Katy Smith, from Winton Community Academy, singing Hallelujah in the pop category.

Judges on the night were Julian Dawes, a composer from London, musician Andrew Pomphrey, Sandro Murelli, a guitar teacher and former music professor from Milan, and MP for North West Hampshire Kit Malthouse.

The event had the backing of David Mellor Jewellers, John Martin of Marston Robing and Test Valley Art Foundation, all of whom sponsored the night.

The musical showcase also raised a total of £1,500, which is being donated to St Mary’s Church.