A BASINGSTOKE schoolgirl won a competition to design a ship.

Nine-year-old Tilly Mae Eastham, of Gregory Close, Oakridge, who is in Year 5 at South View Junior School, will be popular with her classmates after she won them a trip to Buckler’s Hard, as well as a year’s pass to the attraction for her family.

The competition was part of the 50th anniversary of Buckler’s Hard’s Maritime Museum.

The Gazette and other Newsquest titles asked youngsters to draw a ship for a pirate, a smuggler or Vice-Admiral Lord Horatio Nelson to win the top prize.

Tilly Mae, who drew a picture of a pirate ship for the competition, said: “I feel really happy and I love Buckler’s Hard – we have been there before.”

Talking about her classmates’ reaction, the schoolgirl added: “They were really happy and are really excited. My teacher really likes going on trips. We have been told we will be going there in June or July with the school, when it is warmer.”

Tilly Mae, who is part of the Basingstoke Young Carers Project, will also be able to visit the attraction with her parents, Jane, 45, and Ian, 47, and older brother, 13-year-old Shaun, who is autistic.

Proud mum Jane, 45, said: “We went about three years ago and she went on and on about it for a couple of years. She has wanted to go back and I know it really means a lot to her. We are incredibly proud of her.

“It means all the family can go out which is going to be extremely fabulous.”