Eastbourne students with the gift of the gab

Last year's winners Gildredge House

Last year's winners Gildredge House

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Eastbourne residents are being urged to support the second annual Ian Gow Cup public speaking competition for the town’s school pupils.

Six secondary schools in the constituency are taking part in the competition in memory of local MP Ian Gow, who was murdered by the IRA in 1990.

The event, on October 20 from 5pm to 8pm in the Gold Room at the Winter Garden, will be sponsored by local solicitors Gaby Hardwicke.

“This is going to be another wonderful evening showcasing the young public speaking talent we have here in Eastbourne and I hope as many people as possible will come and listen to what might be the next generation of public figures honing their skills,” said Eastbourne MP Caroline Ansell, who is hosting the event.

“This year teams of Year 9 pupils will be debating ‘Freedom and democracy; why this is as important today as it has ever been’ which, in the present climate, is very pertinent and should be very thought-provoking.”

Ian Gow’s widow, Dame Jane Whiteley, will be Guest of Honour at the event.

There will be book token prizes for all participants, and teams will compete for the honour of winning the Ian Gow Cup.

The competition will be judged by the Eastbourne Speakers Club.

The schools taking part this year are: Ratton, Gildredge House, Causeway, St Catherine’s College, Eastbourne Academy and Willingdon.

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