Saturday 16th June saw Ranelagh crowned the winners of the Mock Trial National Final, the first team from Berkshire to earn this accolade. The majority of the team arrived in Birmingham to compete the night before, with the Year 9s arriving directly from their residential trips in Wales. It was a very tired but determined team that were raring to go on Saturday morning.
We arrived in the extremely impressive Victoria Law Courts in Birmingham and started the day with a lovely good luck card which helped to calm some nerves. Our first heat was in one of the older courts which was a new experience for the students, having only seen modern court rooms until this point. Whatever nerves the students had in the morning were gone from the moment our usher (Lara Gell) shouted the first words – “Court Rise!” across a crowded court room, we were off!
From the first round, the students went almost directly into the second round where the other half of our team competed. Throughout the process, the students were calm and poised, followed complicated court procedures and projected their voices to fill the large rooms. They all had to listen, react on the spot and put all their training into practice. They were simply superb.
The results were extremely close and came down to a small amount of points at the end, with Ranelagh eventually being crowned the winners after all their hard work. It has been a pleasure to work with the team who have been humble and supportive of each other since we first began to rehearse in November. They have shown a huge amount of resilience and have all increased their performance skills and confidence. All the team have gained so much from the competition and we all wish to say a huge thank you for the help and support we have had from local magistrates and lawyers, in particular Mr Juden and Mr Witten.