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27 June, 2005

Magistrates Court Mock Trial Competition national winners announced

Eighteen schools competed for the prestigious national title at the 2005 Magistrates’ Court Mock Trial Finals in Birmingham Magistrates’ Court on Saturday 25 June.

Battling through two rounds to reach the finals, each of the teams of 12-14 year olds took part in two trials, one about wildlife smuggling and other about a common assault. Pupils from Wood Green School, Oxfordshire were chosen as winners and Weobley High School, Herefordshire were runners-up.

Charlotte Rowe, a member of the winning team, said, “We’re so glad we took part in the Mock Trials; the competition is a great learning experience. We now have a far better understanding of court cases and the law in general.”

Tony Breslin, Chief Executive of the Citizenship Foundation comments, “We are delighted to see that more and more schools are getting involved in the competition. Over 4,500 young people competed this year in one of the only active learning legal competitions in the UK.”

“The enthusiasm and understanding the young people show for the Mock Trials is inspiring but more importantly we are confident that they take away skills such as communication, analysis and team work, as well as a real sense of achievement from the whole process.”

The Magistrates’ Court Mock Trial Competition is organised by the Citizenship Foundation in partnership with the Magistrates Association. All the judging took place in real courts by high profile magistrates and legal professionals.

The 2005-06 competition is now open for entry until October 7th 2005. Teams will be supported by resource packs, a teaching video and invaluable visits from local magistrates or solicitors. Now in its eleventh year, the competition is funded by the Department for Constitutional Affairs and Wilkinson.

To find out more please email:

Notes for editors:

About the Citizenship Foundation

The Citizenship Foundation is an independent charity (no. 801360) which aims to empower individuals to engage in the wider community through education about the law, democracy and society. Founded in 1989, we focus particularly on developing young people’s citizenship skills, knowledge and understanding. www.citizenshipfoundation.org.uk

Our work includes:

• A comprehensive range of citizenship resources for a wide audience from teachers to young offenders.

• Nationwide and international training programmes.

• National active learning projects for secondary schools.

• Community projects to develop citizenship education as a collective responsibility.

• Research to advance our understanding of best practice in citizenship education.

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