The Rotary clubs of Bradford on Avon, Chippenham, Melksham and Wiltshire Vale sponsored the intermediate heat of the 2014 Youth Speaks contest, which was held at Stonar School, near Atworth.

Eight teams of 11 to 14-year-olds from local schools had around ten minutes each to present their chosen topic to an audience of around 100 friends and relatives.

The topics were extremely varied but all the contestants delivered them with confidence, flair and considerable humour, much to the delight of the audience.

Adjudicators Ann Walker and John Greenwood had a difficult task due to the high standards shown but the eventual winner was Hardenhuish School, Chippenham, whose topic was “Should children be educated about homosexuality in schools?”

The winning team members were chairperson Rachel Sexton, speaker Ellie Allan and proposer Kathryn Titcomb.

They received their awards from Mike Perry MBE, president of the Rotary Club of Chippenham, in the presence of the Mayor of Chippenham, Sylvia Gibson.

A further accolade for Hardenhuish came from the fact that Ellie Allan was chosen as the best speaker from the eight contesting teams.

Hardenhuish now go forward to the heats in Frome on February 27.