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Year 11 Anya is a clear winner in the gdst chrystall prize 2017

On Friday 10 March, Mrs Lloyd-Hughes and Year 11 student Anya Grayson travelled to Notting Hill & Ealing High School to take part in the final of the highly regarded GDST Public Speaking Competition, The Chrystall Prize. We are very proud to report that Anya was crowned champion!

Anya’s topic was: 'We are the luckiest people in the history of the world, life has never been better than in the early 21st century'.

She chose this topic because it is important that we should all understand that 'with opportunity comes responsibility' and we should all recognise that as the lucky ones, we should be doing all we can to help others less fortunate than ourselves.

The students speak on their allocated topic and then are asked questions by the audience. Anya was up against some amazing young ladies, mainly from London schools. They were all ‘outstanding speakers, and very well prepared on their topics’, and as Anya was last to speak, she became increasingly nervous and her heart beat increasingly fast as she had to listen to all the brilliant speeches before her!

Of course, as soon as it was all over she felt a massive feeling of satisfaction! Anya described how she felt:

‘I'm obviously so, so glad that I did it. I've absolutely loved the past couple of months as the experience has made me so much more confident and it's been so character building for me, I couldn't have done it without the dedicated help of Mrs Lloyd Hughes and would like to thank her a lot for all the support, I would recommend the experience to anyone else interested as it was fantastic.’

GDST’s Chief Executive Cheryl Giovannoni described Anya’s performance as ‘Incredible. She was mature, engaging, flawlessly prepared but with real humility and quiet confidence.’

The prestigious competition is named after Chrystall Carter, Legal Adviser to the Trust and then Deputy Legal Secretary, until her sudden and untimely death in 1999. This competition was set up by her husband in her memory, to mark her commitment to the girls themselves, her pleasure in their success and her belief in the power of argument.

Anya receives a prize of a £100 book token.

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