On Saturday 9th February 15 Downside students travelled to Wood Green Crown Court in London to take part in a mock trial competition with five other schools.

The pupils participated in three rounds covering two criminal cases, before real judges and prepared the parts of barristers, witnesses, jurors, clerk and usher. Special mention must be made of Barnaby who took the parts of barrister and witness, and whose final witness performance was ‘Oscar winning’ along with that of Michael, according to one judge; Joseph who accompanied him as a prosecution barrister, and Georgia Bolton and Georgia O’Keefe, also a fine barrister team; Thecla Richardson as an efficient and clear court clerk, and Aram Sola as an usher.

This was an excellent day on many levels, with the skills of legal preparation, speeches for defence and prosecution and the arts of examining and cross-examining, performing in public and gaining confidence in public speaking.

Special thanks must also go to Mr Preston QC who gave up much time to prepare and encourage the team both before and on the day, and to Dr Tapia and Mr Walters for overseeing the event. We will back next year to win it.