Lucy Duggan took part in the Historical Association’s Great Debate competition and won the Durham heat. We are thrilled to announce that Lucy is now going through to the finals at Windsor Castle in March.
The Great Debate is the Historical Association’s public-speaking competition for students aged 16-19. 2022 is Queen Elizabeth II’s platinum jubilee and as the Queen is a patron of the Historical Association, her lengthy reign is used as inspiration to examine some of the ways the world has changed in that time. This includes societal infrastructure, industry, rural life, the environment and ideas. Looking at which changes of the last 70 years have affected the students local area the most.
Topics considered were different types of employment; the houses or accommodation that people live in; the technology in people’s lives; the different types of communities that are in their area; food and eating choices; leisure activities; and what they think is important about the area they live in.
Each student had to deliver their argument in response to the question. The judge, Professor Richard Huzzey, from Durham University’s History department then asked questions for further information or clarity on certain points.
Lucy delivered a five minute speech on the most significant change to the local area in the past 70 years, focusing on the closure of Consett Steelworks in 1980, which she argued was emblematic of socio-economic change in the region more widely. Lucy commented “I have always had a strong interest in the history of Consett, having grown up in the area and regularly spending time cycling with my grandad (who inspired me to learn more about the Steelworks). Through the Great Debate, I was able to share my research and gain a lot more confidence.”
All finalists are given free membership to The Historical Association, to gain access to fantastic resources and also a personal cash prize will go to the winner alongside additional prizes for the school.
We wish Lucy the very best of luck for this exciting opportunity to represent Durham Sixth Form Centre at the finals next month.