A budding author wrote his own happy ending when he was presented with his prizes for winning a story-writing competition.

Ben Rogers, 13, of All Saints Church of England Academy at Ingleby Barwick, was the winner of the secondary schools’ section of the competition, organised by Darlington Building Society, in association with The Northern Echo and TFM Radio.

Ben won £500 worth of books for his school, plus his own height in books and a “magical mystery ride” for his family on the North York Moors Railway.

His winning story, chosen from more than 300 entries, was a poignant account of a boy who was inspired by the death of his mother to win an Olympic gold medal.

The prizes were presented by author and journalist Peter Barron, who is Darlington Building Society’s literacy ambassador.

The school’s Head of English Louise Gavaghan said: “The competition really fired the children’s imaginations and we are so proud of Ben for emerging as the winner with his beautifully-written story.”

Caroline Darnbrook, Darlington Building Society’s Director of Products and Marketing, said: “We were thrilled with the number of entries and the standard of the writing. It’s fantastic to see the depth of talent in our schools and a special well done to Ben for coming out on top.”

Primary schools’ winner, Morgan Murphy, 10, of Skerne Park School in Darlington, is to be presented with the same prize soon.