Background Information

The Friends of the Turnbull Library NgāHoa o te Whare Pukapuka Turnbull have been supporting the work of the Alexander Turnbull Library since May 1939. We decided to sponsor a SMART ALEX Competition for three years, to encourage young people to explore the Library vast collection of images and to create imaginative responses to items in the collections of the Alexander Turnbull Library.  The third year of this creative writing competition was a celebration of the centenary of the Alexander Turnbull Library. This wonderful national treasure – the beating heart of the National Library of New Zealand Te Puna Mātauranga o Aotearoa – first opened its doors to the public in June 1920.

We were very pleased with the response from schools in 2018, 2019 and 2020. Congratulations to all prize-winners, and hearty thanks to all those who entered during the three years of the first Smart Alex creative writing competition! See 2020 Competition Results for the full list of prize-winners, and a link to that year’s best entries.

Now in 2022, we are about to launch a new competition! We want to encourage young people to investigate the amazing range and depth of digital items that can now be accessed online from the vast collections of the Alexander Turnbull Library. Go to Smart Alex

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