High-profile adjudicators for debating competition

The Towers Convent team with Rotary club president Robert Dunn
The Towers Convent team with Rotary club president Robert Dunn

YOUNG people will be putting their debating skills to the test in the semi-finals of a Rotary competition.

Shoreham and Southwick Rotary Club is hosting the competition, which will see six teams competing for a place in the final.

Rotarian Les Baker explained the club is part of Rotary District 1250, which covers the area from Seaford to Chichester and up to Reigate in the north.

“Our district, in common with all other Rotary districts in the country, organises an annual schools public speaking competition called Youth Speaks, where teams of three from many schools enter to contest their skills with other local schools.

“After the first rounds, the winners of each in our district are entered in a semi final and this year, our Rotary district has asked the Rotary Club of Shoreham and Southwick to host the semi-final competition.”

The winner of the club’s own first round, The Towers Convent School in Upper Beeding, will be competing against Oathall Community College in Lindfield, Worth School in Turners Hill, Imberhorne Scool in East Grinstead, Burgess Hill School for Girls and Downlands School in Hassocks.

The semi-final takes place at Shoreham Academy, in Kingston Lane, on Tuesday, February 10, at 6pm.

Mr Baker said: “After each team has made their presentation, some refreshments will be served, courtesy of the Interact Club at Shoreham Academy.”

Adjudicators are East Worthing and Shoreham MP Tim Loughton, Sussex police and crime commissioner Katy Bourne, and Herald and Gazette head of news Sam Woodman.

Mr Baker said: “We are incredibly lucky to have managed to arrange the services of three very busy people to act as our adjudicators. We are indebted to them for giving up their valuable time to give our schools competition the support that we think the young people deserve.

“The team of three adjudicators will spend half an hour or so considering all of the presentations and will then come to a decision on the first and second best performances. Both teams will then be invited to take part in the district final later in the year.

“We wish all the competing teams success in this sometimes daunting task of public speaking on a very diverse set of subjects for in total ten minutes in front of the three high-profile judges and a large audience.”