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The annual Year 8 Speech Competition took place on Wednesday 29 March in the HCS Library. Every pupil in Year 8 researched and delivered a speech on a subject of their choice to their class, with the best 12 going head to head to win the prestigious Speaker’s Cup.

This year’s competition was presided over by ex-HCS English teacher, Mrs Wooderson, whose 35 years of experience of listening to speeches gives her the necessary expertise to judge the winning presentation.


Topics this year ranged from Scottish independence to snow leopards, with a number of speeches suggesting radical changes to the school uniform, facilities and curriculum. Philosophical conundrums were also a feature, with discussions of why living forever would be a bad idea and whether the universe is defined. Cultural arguments also got an airing, with a spirited defence of rap music, a call for greater arts funding and a plug for Clarkson’s Farm being the best thing on TV.

The eventual winner, praised for the maturity of his argument, was Macsen J (pictured below), with his speech on why music education should be compulsory to 16.

Mrs Wooderson praised the very high standard of speeches this year and the wonderful diversity of topics as well as giving useful tips on successful speech-making.