A WREXHAM schoolgirl with dreams of becoming a star on the West End, has already proven herself to be a winner on the national stage.

Ruby Birchall, 16, from Hightown, has been competing at the Urdd National Eisteddfod in Cardiff since the age of ten, and in that time, has won several first place prizes for performing poetry.

The Eisteddfod is one of Europe's largest youth competitive festivals with over 15,000 children and young people under the age of 25 competing during the week in various competitions such as singing, dancing and performing. They are the elite few from around 40,000 competitors across Wales who have won their place following local and regional rounds held in the spring months leading up to the Eisteddfod.

Ruby, who in five visits to the festival, has finished first three times and second twice, has just completed her GCSE's at St Joseph's School and says she would love one day to grace the stages of the West End.

She said: "I've been performing at Eisteddfod since I was ten and there's just so many activities involved, from singing and dancing to cooking competitions. It's a brilliant way of celebrating the Welsh culture.

"A poem will be selected for each age category and then you go away, learn it and then perform it. I suppose it's like acting out a poem, but you obviously don't go too over the top."

Ruby, who doesn't actually write the poems she performs said her next step will be to go and study her A-Levels at Coleg Cambria, including English Literature and drama, said she didn't really think about acting until she started doing her GCSE's.

She added: "When I competed I didn't really think about the acting aspect. When I took drama for my GCSE's and I really started to get into the performance side of it.

"I'd love to get into the West End because I love singing as well. Obviously it's a big ambition, but you've got to try."

Ruby said her family are all proud and singing and Welsh language is something of a tradition that runs on her Mum's side of the family.

She said: "My Mum's side are all Welsh and my Grandad especially proud because his Dad and Grandad were both singing teachers and they were taking part in Eisteddfod's all the time.

"My Dad's side of the family is as English as you go, as they're all from Wigan!

Ruby's Mum Lowri, 46 said: "I'm so proud of Ruby and I think she deserves some praise for her amazing track record of getting first three times and second twice.

"This is the fifth time she has represented her school in the Urdd."