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Report by HCS Head of English, Mr Abbott

On the last day of the Spring Term, Year 8 gathered in the Powell Theatre for the grand final of the Year 8 Speech Competition.

After weeks of careful rhetorical crafting and delivery in the class heats, it was time for Year 8’s finest orators to deliver their well-chosen words to their peers under the watchful eye of our guest judge and former HCS English Teacher, Mrs Wooderson.

Topics ranged from how to deal with siblings from Anna P to discrimination in China from Toby P. We were given insights into topics as diverse as the Hereford Cathedral Organ (Neirin O) and a fascinating personal insight into the very serious business of living with Type 1 diabetes (Mattie F). Some people tackled serious subjects like whaling (Oliver B) poaching (Ollie H) and child abduction (Clara M) while Sam S amused everyone with a very clever talk on how to write a speech. 

With a free choice of what to talk about, it is always fascinating to see the topics that are concerning Year 8s in any given year. This year we had very informed talks about sustainable eating (Jack J) and data privacy (Daniel H) that gave us much to think about, but the eventual winner, with a hugely confident and well-informed talk on the war in Ukraine, was George M (pictured above right), who was presented with The Speaker’s Cup for this year.  

Well done to all our speakers on the day and all those who prepared speeches for the competition. Mrs Wooderson commented on how the quality of speeches rises each year and how impressed she was by the overall standard of public speaking on show.