A schoolgirl from Rustington has landed a £500 prize for herself and an additional £500 for her cheerleading group after winning a national film competition with a musical video tour of the village.
Sydney Craddock, nine, penned her own lyrics to the Wizard of Oz song ‘Over The Rainbow’ and took to the streets, beaches and parks of the picturesque West Sussex village to perform it. The resulting video was submitted to property specialist Leaders as part of its ‘Love living in’ competition.
‘Love living in’ invited people from all parts of the UK to make a film of no more than three minutes that summed up exactly why they love where they live.
Sydney says she loves to sing, so when she heard about the competition she decided to use her voice to create a video that would stand out.
“I thought it would be a bit different to sing, rather than talk, about Rustington. So I asked my mum to help me and we thought about all the fun things there are to do in the village, while thinking up new words for the song. It took several days and many changes before we were ready to film,” she explains.
Despite the impressive quality of her film, Sydney says the production was actually relatively low-tech, as she used a Wii microphone from a computer game and a tea towel to reduce unwanted noise.
Upon learning she had won the Best Film by a Young Person prize, Sydney says: “I was so excited and surprised that I burst into tears. I so wanted to win but didn’t think I would. My mum told me at dance school and all the girls and my teacher cheered and hugged me.”
Sydney is now planning to use her £500 prize to purchase a new microphone for her singing as well as computer software.
In addition to her own prize of £500, Sydney’s success meant she was able to nominate a community group of her choice to receive a further £500. She chose the Outlaw Allstars cheerleading group in Littlehampton, of which she is a member, to receive the cash.
Outlaw Allstars was formed in December 2015 and is open to local children of all ages and abilities. The team competes at a national level and is also invited to do displays at local community events, such as the recent Cancerwise event in Mewsbook Park and the Littlehampton Carnival Christmas Event.
The team’s coach, Lara Dumbleton said, “We are thrilled that Sydney chose Outlaws for the community group prize. The money will help us, with Sydney's input, to buy apparel for the girls to wear at competitions and events. All donations, small or large, help us to develop our coaches and our squad to achieve their dreams.”
Kylie Bishop, who has recently taken up the position of branch manager at Leaders in Rustington, is pleased that the village provided the winner for a national competition.
“Despite fierce competition from many other great videos from around the country, Sydney’s original tour of Rustington was the standout entry. To display such talent for singing and filming at such a young age is extremely impressive.
“Rustington is undoubtedly a wonderful place to live and it is popular with people of all ages, particularly families. I am delighted Sydney was able to capture all of its charm and natural beauty in her film.”
To watch Sydney’s video and the other entries please visit www.lovelivingin.co.uk.
For advice you can trust on all aspects of selling, letting, buying or renting a property in Rustington contact Leaders on 01903 786666 or pop into the branch at 25 Church Road, Rustington for a chat with the friendly team.
Photo: The Outlaw Allstars team with Sydney Craddock receiving a cheque for the group.