10 Dec 2013

On 21st November Farlington hosted the 2013 public speaking contest organized by the Rotary Club of Horsham as part of the RIBI (Rotary International in Great Britain and Ireland) Youth Speaks competition. All the local senior schools sent a full complement of speakers, both at intermediate and senior level, and the Farlington Sixth Form library was packed with young orators and their supporters. As the judges observed, the standard this year was the highest yet reached with some outstanding talent on display. To hear pupils as young as 13 holding the stage for eight minutes and delivering cogent and perceptive arguments on topics as diverse as capital punishment and the English as lazy linguists was truly impressive, and all the competitors did their respective schools proud.

The Farlington junior team was chaired by Abigail Hart, displaying an effective mix of competence and clarity, and the enthusiastic and lively vote of thanks was proposed by Rebecca Maguire. The main speaker, Summer Raemason, spoke with great assurance and her topic of travel and experiences entertained as well as informed. The team from Millais won the junior round.

An admirable blend of poise and purpose was quickly established by Eleanor Bell, chairing the Farlington senior team; and Katie Wycliffe’s vote of thanks showed an impressive ability to think on her feet. The main speaker, Katie Maguire, gave a thought-provoking and captivating speech on body language, and she judiciously blended humour with insight. Katie won great praise from the judges and Farlington, deservedly, were declared winners of the senior competition and are through to the next stage of the RIBI Youth Speaks competition which will be held at The University of Surrey.