House Debate Competition Finale

Friday lunchtime’s House Debate Grand Final was a dramatic and keenly-contested conclusion to the inter-House competition which began in the Spring term. To encourage wide participation, Houses were represented by teams of three, and each team had to include at least one girl from LV or below; the debates were ably chaired and judged by volunteers from UVI.

After three very close first-round debates, covering the evils of technology, celebrity role models and the right of unpopular opinions to be heard, Newby were narrowly eliminated, leaving Harewell and York to compete in the grand final, debating the motion, “This House believes that a strong dictatorship is better than a weak democracy.” To make the final debate even more challenging, the teams did not find out which side of the motion they were arguing until just 20 minutes before the debate began.

On the day, York lost the coin toss and Harewell chose to propose the motion. The girls’ speeches were passionate and well-researched on both sides, with some spirited (and occasionally heated!) questions from the floor. Despite York’s powerful argument that “absolute power corrupts absolutely”, the judges narrowly favoured Harewell’s defence of benign dictators and so Harewell were victorious.

The teams from all three Houses deserve congratulations for their teamwork and support of one another, and we look forward to more debates in the future.