Victoria Shield 2011

Yesterday the WSU held its annual impromptu debating tournament, open to all to enter. Thanks to Samuel Marsden for providing the venue for the day.

Nine teams entered the competition. It was particularly pleasing to see some school students enter, as well as some people from Auckland. The standard of debating was very high, with former winners of the Parliamentary Shield as well as multiple winners of the university impromptu tournament (Easters) all participating.

There were four rounds of debates, followed by semi-finals and the Grand Final. The topics are listed below.

The semi-finalists (in order) were Seb Templeton & Richard D’Ath, Paul Smith & Clodagh O’Connor-McKenna, Udayan Mukherjee & Ella Edginton, and Joe Connell & Kevin Moar.

In the semis, Seb and Richard defeated Joe and Kevin, and Udayan and Ella defeated Paul and Clodagh.

The Grand Final was an excellent debate on the motion “That we should return cultural treasures to their place of origin”. The three judges (Stephen Whittington, Christopher Bishop and Daniel Wilson) were unanimous in awarding the debate to the affirmative team of Udayan Mukherjee and Ella Edginton, who thus won the Victoria Shield for the first time.

Thanks to the adjudicators: Stephen Whittington, Christopher Bishop, Polly Higbee, Daniel Wilson and Tom Mathews.


Round One

  • That we should recriminalise prostitution
  • That heterosexual couples should get Civil Unions in solidarity with homosexual couples

Round Two

  • That we support price gouging in response to natural disasters
  • That we support the bailout of AMI

Round Three

  • That ultra fast broadband is an ultra fast boondoggle
  • That we should ban the publication of opinion polls during election campaigns

Round Four

  • That the West should put troops on the ground in Libya
  • That we support a foreign policy of non-interventionism


  • That we support ticket scalping
  • This House would allow politicians to make specific election promises legally binding in the event of victory


  • This House would return cultural treasures to their place of origin
  • This House would force purchasers of art to pay a royalty to the original creator

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