Dalriada students reach final of Bar Mock Trials in London’s Old Bailey

Dalriada's Bar Mock team
Dalriada's Bar Mock team

This Saturday (April 23rd), 15 sixth form pupils from Dalriada School will represent Northern Ireland in the National Final of the annual Bar Mock Trial Competition.

This year the final will be held at The Old Bailey in London and will involve 15 other regional winners from across England, Scotland and Wales.

The competition aims to give young people an exciting and innovative insight into the workings of the legal system.

Each team consists of 15 students who take on the roles of barristers, witnesses, court staff and jurors. It will undoubtedly be a tough competition as witnesses are cross-examined with precision by opposing barristers, who themselves will be winners of their region. The students

are then judged by legal professionals on their individual performances as they prosecute and defend two carefully planned cases. Each team will compete in three rounds within their league, before the two teams with the best overall performance compete for first place in the final round of the day.

Dalriada’s Bar Mock Team has enjoyed much success in recent years. This is their fourth time to have the opportunity to compete at national level and in previous years they have also represented N.I. at the World Championships of Mock Trial in New York.

In November 2015 the Dalriads faced Coleraine Grammar School in the final round of the N.I. heats and won.

As current N.I. champions they have been preparing for the National Final and are determined to do their utmost to win the coveted title ‘Bar National Mock Trial Champions.’

The team are very grateful to once again have had the assistance of Craig Dunford BL and Lynn McMullan BL. Craig has worked with Dalriada’s Mock Trial teams for many years, and as a past pupil of Dalriada, Lynn is delighted to be involved. Their advice throughout the year has been invaluable.

A huge thank you must also go to McAuley Engineering and The Bar Council, who have sponsored the team. Their support and generosity has been much appreciated by each member of the Bar Mock Team.

DEBATING

Meanwhile, pupils from another County Antrim school are celebrating their success in an all-island debating competition organised by global humanitarian charity Concern Worldwide.

Sixth form students from Cross and Passion College, Ballycastle won the quarter final debate against St Kilian’s DS, Dublin at an event in Belfast.

The Ballycastle pupils spoke against the view that developing countries should impose restrictions on people moving to cities from rural areas. The four-strong team now face Athlone Community College in the semi-finals in Dublin at the end of the month.

The Concern school debates aim to give young people a deeper understanding of international development issues and have been running for over 30 years with more than 45,00 students having taken part.

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