As part of the organisation’s Love Your Castle initiative, launched last year, booklets have been delivered to all 32 local primary schools to give children a chance to complete the challenge during their summer holidays.
There are two sleepover prizes available – one for Best Picture and the other for Best Story. The young explorers are encouraged to visit Mont Orgueil and charge around the adventure playground, dress up as knights and princesses, climb the steps to the very top of the Castle and enjoy the far-off views of the French coast. If they are lucky they may also see dolphins or seals swimming in the bay. Or they can take the amphibious ferry out to Elizabeth Castle to discover cannons, hear gruesome stories from the regimental Surgeon and uncover weapons from battles fought.
Helen Otterwell, Community Learning and Engagement Manager for Jersey Heritage said: "This is a great way for young islanders to explore the castles with their families. We are encouraging all islanders to engage with our heritage and to keep telling the Island’s stories in order to safeguard them for generations to come. The Castle Challenge is an exciting way to tell our history with an amazing prize to win – after all, who wouldn't want to have a Castle all to themselves and their friends for a night?"
In addition to the Castle Challenge, Ogier has supported a number of formal learning initiatives at Elizabeth Castle. Ogier's Head of Marketing, Kate Kirk, said: "The Castle Schools include fun and educational programme involving children from Key Stage 2 being invited to take part in an on-site, interactive learning experience."Education is essential to understanding the importance of the Castle and so we are very pleased to be sponsoring this element of the campaign."
In addition to the two major heritage sites that are part of the Castle Challenge competition, the ‘Story Guards’ can also explore for free the ruins of 14th Century Grosnez Castle, where Philippe de Carteret held out against the French at the start of the 100 Years’ War.
The Castle Challenge is open to all Island schoolchildren aged five to 11, who can submit either a picture or a story. A downloadable version of the challenge can be found here. Entries have to be submitted by 3rd September and the sleepover has to be booked by 31st August 2019, subject to availability and terms and conditions, which can be found at www.jerseyheritage.org.