The budding artists of Scotland’s schools still have time to take part in the biggest and best ever poster competition organised by the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.

The annual Schools Poster Competition, now in its 32nd year sees pupils from Shetland to Selkirk entering artwork each year in the hope of having their design selected to be the official Fringe poster. Copies of the poster are always very popular, particularly with visitors from overseas, and they are one of the most iconic mementos of a visit to Edinburgh and its world famous Fringe Festival.

Each year the competition attracts thousands of entries from schools across Scotland. Its launch in 1980 makes it one of the longest running arts outreach projects in Scotland.

Last year the competition was won by 15-year-old Ailsa Purdie from Dundee with local boy Gordon Smith (13) from Whalsay School coming top in the regional final.

Over the past three decades the competition has inspired over 100,000 school children from across Scotland to create an image encapsulating their interpretation of the world’s largest arts festival. Each year the winning entry becomes the official Fringe poster as well as gracing postcards, magnets, mugs and t-shirts. All of which are all sold to eager festival-goers and visitors to take away as souvenirs at the world famous Fringe Shop on Edinburgh’s Royal Mile.

As well as the honour of seeing their design grace so many posters and tee-shirts the overall winner receives a cash prize of £300 for themselves and £750 for their school during a glitzy award ceremony in Edinburgh. This year the competition is sponsored by Virgin Money and the winning artist will also receive two tickets to attend the Virgin Money Fireworks Concert that marks the end of Edinburgh’s summer festival season.

The annual exhibition of the winning and commended posters is one of the highlights of a visit to Edinburgh for many people each summer. Last year’s exhibition of over one hundred posters took place in the Museum of Childhood in the city centre and proved to be a smash hit with visitors and locals alike.

Fringe Society Chief Executive Kath M Mainland said:

"I am delighted that we can give school pupils from Scotland an opportunity to get involved with the Edinburgh Fringe. This competition is very important to us as it allows us to connect with young people all across the country.

"My job involves talking to lots of people about the Edinburgh Festival Fringe and very often many of these people I meet have explained to me that their first memories of the Fringe are entering the Poster Competition. This is an excellent way for young people to get switched on to the arts and the Fringe in particular.

"At the Fringe Society we work very hard to make sure that everyone can feel a part of the Fringe - no matter how old they are or where in the country they live. The Poster Competition is an excellent way to get youngsters to think about the arts and what they might mean for their lives.

"This year we also have significantly enhanced material for teachers, including lesson plans, to help them get the most out of this exciting competition.

"Participating in the Fringe is not just about standing on a stage and performing - although that is very important - because everyone who engages with the Fringe is a participant and an equal part of the process. That is why this Poster Competition is so important to us and why we want as many pupils and schools from across Scotland to take part."


Notes to editors:

  • Entries for the Poster Competition should be sent to: Schools Poster Competition, Edinburgh Festival Fringe, 180 High Street, Edinburgh, EH1 1QS no later than Friday 16 March.

  • The competition is open to all 5 to 16 year old pupils at schools in Scotland and a full set of entry specifications can be downloaded at www.edfringe.com

  • For more information contact our media team on 0131 240 1919 or email media@edfringe.com.