Oundle School orators from the Third, Fourth and Fifth Forms (Years 9-11) recently competed in the area heat of the ESU Churchill Public Speaking Competition for Schools at Uppingham School. Adjudicators included Mr David Lee, Miss Caroline Windsor and Mr John Cartwright, all of whom have regularly adjudicated this event.
Two Oundle teams were among the seven competitors. Each team presented a formal display featuring a chairperson, a questioner and a guest speaker who delivered the topic for discussion. The presentations were judged on style, content, authority and engagement.
Competition was both vigorous and stiff, and as only one team of the seven competing would go through, Oundle did very well to be that one team, addressing the topic 'The Internet is a Drug and We are All Addicted'. The winning team comprised Catherine Swanston (14) as Chair, William Slinger (14) as Speaker and George Brettle (15), as Questioner. George was also awarded Best Questioner of the evening.
The regional round of the competition will be held at Magdalene College, Cambridge in March.
Background Information on Oundle School
Oundle School is situated in the quintessentially English market town of Oundle, about 90 miles north of London. The School’s buildings, dating from the 17th to the 21st centuries, are dispersed throughout the town, which is, to a large extent, its campus.
The School’s history dates back to 1556, when Sir William Laxton, Master of the Worshipful Company of Grocers and Lord Mayor of London, endowed and re-founded the original Oundle Grammar School, of which he was a former pupil. In 1876, the Grocer’s Company divided the School into two parts; Laxton Grammar School, primarily for the inhabitants of the town, and Oundle School, primarily for pupils from further afield. In 2000, the Grocers’ Company reunited the two schools under the common name of Oundle School and retained the name of Laxton for the day House.
At the beginning of the 20th century, Oundle was put firmly on the map of leading English public schools by its most famous headmaster, F W Sanderson, who established Oundle’s reputation as one of the great science and engineering schools, a reputation still renowned today. In 2007, SciTec - a major and ground-breaking new science complex - opened, housing 16 state-of-the-art laboratories. The School is now embarking on a large SciTec Campus development project which will see a new Mathematics department constructed adjacent to SciTec as well as a significant upgrade to the Design and Technology department within the Patrick Engineering Centre. Due for completion in September 2016, the development will unite Science, Mathematics, Design, Technology and Engineering both physically and philosophically, enabling pupils to move seamlessly from theory to practice and from pure science to the achievement of a workable technology. A concurrent Sports MasterPlan will upgrade sporting facilities across the School over the next few years, including a new 1st XI cricket pavilion which opened in April 2015 and new astroturfs due to be completed this year.
There are currently 1110 pupils on roll at Oundle School, with 860 boarders and 250 day pupils. Also within the Corporation of Oundle School is Laxton Junior School, a day school for children aged 4 to 11.