Bronze in Mock Trial World Championship in New York!
November 2017: The trip
It was a very busy few days, starting with a 6 hour delay at LHR after we were hurriedly taken off the plane just after taxi'ing due to a power cut and petrol fumes floating about the plane! This meant we lost our only free afternoon/evening in New York which was such a shame!
The next day it was straight into scrimmaging; a USA term for practising the case against other teams. We realised how competitive the USA teams were as they were scrimmaging every day from 7am in the lead up to the completion, with no downtime for socialising! We felt lucky that our coach, Miss Roberts didn't make us do this!
The rules state that you are only allowed to compete against people in your own division, so we were only permitted to scrimmage with teams in the other division so that we would never face them in trial.
We were reminded just how hard the USA law is, when we were being objected to every two seconds just to try and throw us off our trail of thought! However, one of our UK supporters and mentors; retired Old Bailey Judge Graham Boal, happened to be in NY that day and so he was our presider for the scrimmage and helped us out when we got stuck! It felt so bizarre seeing him in the context of a hotel in New York!
Although we had missed our opportunity to explore the city on the first day , we did get some downtime when after the scrimmage we boarded a party boat, to cruise along the Hudson and meet other teams. We made friends with the Irish school and this friendship lasted the whole of the competition.
The two competition days were extremely tough and didn't come without drama! The Manhattan District Court was huge and one of the schools got stuck in the lifts on their way up to their designated competition courtroom, which delayed the start of all 20 trials (due to rules that all trials start at exactly the same time). The staff hosting the competition attempted to reach them, but then they also got stuck in the lift. and the fire bridge had to come out to rescue everyone! Although we find it amusing now, it meant a long waiting game before the very first round of the competition which made everyone's nerve worse!!
However, it was all worth it in the end when we became bronze winners! We are proud that in only four weeks we managed to make this happen. It was very hard work at times, along with us all having A-levels to study for along with part-time jobs as it meant we did 7-day weeks for 4 whole weeks! Miss Roberts said that when we come to leaving school, we will be well set up for the world of work!
We were so happy that the High Sheriff, James Bagge joined us in New York. We are extremely grateful for his help, and we are so honoured to be here today in Norwich Court, presenting our case to some of Norfolk's dignitaries and legal professionals.
Our fun doesn't stop here though, as in January we will be hosted by Lady Leicester of Holkham for the evening. Along with this, High Sheriff James Bagge, has invited us to his Justice Service on March 4th at KL Minster, where we will be in the procession through the town and one of us will be doing a reading.
We are so grateful for the support of our school, our sponsors and our supporters.