A schoolgirl showed off her acting skills as she recited one of her favourite poems about a tiger to win first place in a poetry competition.

Rachel Price, 12, of Muswell Hill, impressed judges with her performance of The Tiger by Alan Macdonald as part of the Off by Heart competition for Barnet secondary schools.

Rachel, a pupil at The Mount School, in Milespit Hill, Mill Hill, said: “I chose this poem because I could put actions to it and bring it to life. I was using facial expressions, different voices and hand actions.”

Rachel was awarded a poetry book and a box of chocolates.

She said: “I watched the other performances and thought I won’t win this. I really wasn’t expecting it – I was shocked.”

The competition was started by the librarians at East Barnet School who encouraged children to recite one of their favourite poems from memory.

Second place went to Oliver Owen from Friern Barnet School for his reading of a Wilfred Owen poem.