Religion, Sex and Politics. The three subjects that Speakers Clubs should never go anywhere near. But that’s exactly what we had yesterday evening* in an explosive, blockbuster meeting chaired by Club founder, Debra!
The traditional icebreaker saw Debra ask us to name one thing that we wouldn’t mind losing, with the audience giving answers such as their gardens, their sense of time and their noisy next-door neighbour! This warmed us up nicely for the Topics session where we were all given a discussion point on one of the taboo subjects of Religion, Sex and Politics. Despite the seriousness of some of the themes, it was all very light-hearted, great fun and and an undoubted success.
Big issues of the day (as well as of yesteryear) were confronted by the eager audience who got well and truly stuck into the merits of Margaret Thatcher and Jeremy Corbyn, the scale of the housing crisis and real value of money, and the worthiness of charity CEO’s enormous pay packets. It was Don Bishop who came away with the trophy for best Topic of the evening, with his analysis of his namesake Donald Trump’s first year in office.
How could we possibly follow this? Well in true Wimbledon Speaker Club-style we did just that with an engaging second half that saw Neil give his Level 4 speech, which saw him have to focus on the use of gestures and body language. Neil made a great choice of subject matter for the speech – overcoming his fear of scuba diving – which saw him able to use a wide array of gestures as he described being fitted with his diving kit and making the leap overboard! Sam evaluated Neil’s speech and gave him a solid pass, but with encouragement to take the stabilisers off and dispense of the lectern for future speeches.
Lissy then followed with an education session on the best way to structure a speech. As one would expect with such an experienced public speaker, Lissy gave us all some invaluable advice on the most engaging and logical ways to get from A-Z in speech structure and cleverly used props and a reference to the tale of Little Red Riding Hood in order to illustrate her key points.
It was left to Phillipe to round off the evening with the general evaluation which he did so in fine style and heralding the meeting as a roaring success! And with that, the audience made their way next door to the pub to enjoy a post-meeting tipple!
We look forward to meeting once again on Wednesday 13th December (kick off 7.30pm) for the annual speech competition and for more practice and progress! Everyone welcome – especially new visitors!
*Shhhhhh don’t tell the ASC!
Wimbledon Speakers Club met back up again last night after the Summer break for a fun-packed evening chaired by club founder, Debra Owen-Hughes.
Debra in command!
Three brand new visitors were welcomed on the night, all of whom were looking to improve their public speaking skills – there’s no better place!
After an ice-breaker where we each stood for 30 seconds to say what we’d do with the extra half hour in our lives now that we’ve decided to shorten our meetings slightly, it was onto the topics session.
As Chair (and by default, as Topics Chair!), Debra dished out 2-minute speeches that we had to make on various subjects, ranging from imagining we were giving a ‘best man’ speech for a friend at his ninth wedding, to congratulating a colleague on his retirement at aged 87! Katherine took the honours after delivering the topic she was given with aplomp – changing career from police dog handler to yoga instructor!
Well done, Katherine!
After a cup of tea and a custard cream, the second half of the evening saw an excellent prepared on nutrition and the impact of negative thoughts on diet / weight loss from Simone, followed by a ‘masterclass’ on how best to handle the topics session from Michael. As a 4-time UK Public Speaking Champion, there’s no better person to learn from.
Great speech. Great trainers, Simone!
The evening finished with another quick-fire topics session based on ‘song titles’ followed by an excursion to the pub next door for a drink to reflect on another fun and successful evening at the club.
See you all at the next meeting on Wednesday 27th September. Kick off 7.30pm. Everyone welcome – especially new visitors!
The new term at Wimbledon Speakers Club is just around the corner with the first meeting after the Summer break to take place on Wednesday 13th September at 7.30pm. We look forward to welcoming both new and old friends back to the club as we embark on an exciting year ahead.
And as well as being an exciting year ahead, it is also a celebratory year as our club celebrates its 20th anniversary! Since 1998, we have welcomed hundreds of people through the door who have visited the club in order to develop both their confidence and skills in a variety of forms of verbal communication and public speaking in a fun, friendly and supportive environment.
As well as our typical meeting programme which covers improvised speaking, prepared speeches & speech evaluation, we also intersperse these with other word games, debates and other light-hearted entertainment, all of which helps to improve our public speaking skills. You never stop learning at Wimbledon Speakers Club! For those wishing to take part, we also run annual club competitions in the 3 key speaking disciplines of impromptu speeches, prepared speeches and speech evaluation, the winners of which go on to compete in the national competitions.
So whether you’re a total beginner or more advanced, no matter whether you’re preparing to give a speech at a wedding, a work presentation or just want to improve your overall speaking confidence, Wimbledon Speakers Club is for you!
Our meetings are held on the 2nd & 4th Wednesday of each month at the William Morris Rooms (267, The Broadway, Wimbledon, SW19 1SD) from 7.30pm-9.30pm, so come along and see what we’re all about!
If you have any questions, simply Contact Us!