The House of Lords Cadets Chamber Debate

Air Cadets from all over the Country along with CCF, Army and Sea Cadets have been taking part in training days and debates at various locations to prepare them for a House of Lords Chamber Debate, which is to be held in November.

The House of Lords Information Committee approved Lord Selsdon’s bid for the 2013 Chamber event, to bring cadets aged 14-18, representing all aspects of the armed forces from across the UK, to debate themes around defence in the House of Lords Chamber. The theme of the event will be ‘The Great War: Listening to the Past; Talking to the Future’.

The House of Lords’ Information Office is leading the event, coordinating with the MOD, the English Speaking Union (ESU) and the Royal British Legion (RBL) as its primary partners. Veterans from the Royal British Legion will be taking part also.

Before the main Chamber event the English Speaking Union, which has been engaged to deliver the debate model and debate training, will assist in the delivery of regional ‘Talking Days’ and  three ‘Single Service Heats’ to help select the final three teams to debate in the Chamber event itself. The ‘Talking Days’ will be information gathering events involving structured discussions between cadets and RBL members. The Single Service Heats will each involve up to 16 debating teams, each of two cadets, to decide on the core team from that Service to go forward to the Chamber event. Those cadets not successful in being selected for one of the 3 teams for the Chamber event would be invited to attend the event, and some would have the opportunity to speak ‘from the floor’.

The three teams, one from each Service, selected for the Chamber event will receive more focused training from the English Speaking Union (ESU) and mentor members of the Lords on how to debate in the chamber and how to engage with a large audience.

Flt Lt Margaret Bell, PR Project & Recruitment Officer for Headquarters Air Cadets attended one of the first training days in Cambridge. She said “It was a brilliant day with all three services interacting well, and gelling together. Over 70 tri-service Cadets took part in the event, and it proved very difficult to select which ones will go through to the next stage early in November. The Air Cadets had a wide and varied expanse of knowledge and debating skills which will set them in good stead for the next stage.”

26th September 2013

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