Manchester wins the Oxford IV

Huge congratulations to Jacklin Kwan and Lucie Slamova for winning the final of the Oxford IV 2020! Due to the Coronavirus pandemic, the competition was held online. The final motion read “This House regrets the narrative that there exists no objective truth” and the debate can be watched on YouTube where Jacklin and Lucie were the second proposition team (closing government). Also in the final were teams from LSE, TCD Hist, and McGill.

On top of winning the final, Jacklin and Lucie ranked 5th and 8th best speaker at the competition respectively.

MDU hosts Manchester Schools 2020

The Manchester Debating Union hosted the Annual Manchester Schools National Debating Competition this February. We’d like to thank Alexander Fraser from Glasgow and Lucie Slamova from Warwick for being Chief Adjudicators, and to all the volunteers who judged, ran tabs, and swing spoke for the competition!

Manchester Schools 2020 saw over forty teams compete in four rounds of BP debate. Motions were challenging but rewarding, testing speakers’ ability in a range of topics, from sports to private military contracts.

In the Final we had teams from Coleg Menai in Opening Government, Craigmount High School in Opening Opposition, Grammar Schools at Leeds in Closing Government, and Newcastle High School for Girl in Closing Opposition.

The motions at the competition were as follows:

  • Round 1: THW require all professional football teams to be majority owned by their fans.
  • Round 2: Private Military Contractors (PMCs) are private companies which offer security or armed combat services in exchange for financial reward. They are normally not committed to any one state, private actor or ideology. THBT Western states should not use private military contractors in combat.
  • Round 3: THBT the media should not intrude on the private lives of politicians.
  • Round 4: TH, as the parent of a child prodigy, would push that child to maximize their potential.
  • Grand Final: In 2007, Ecuador has decriminalised gang membership and legalised some of its biggest gangs, including the biggest street gang in the world – the Latin Kings. Ecuadorian gangs were allowed to register as cultural organizations eligible for state funding and various social benefits. The criminal part of their activity remained illegal and no amnesty was granted for convicted gang members. THW legalise gangs in all Latin American countries.

We hope to see you again at the next Annual Manchester Schools National Debating Competition!

The MDU goes to Athens

The Manchester Debating Union travelled to Athens, Greece for the European Universities Debating Championship this week, the largest debating competition in Europe! The competition saw over two hundred of the top teams in Europe compete in nine rounds of debate.

The MDU had a great time speaking and socialising with other debaters on the circuit, and exploring the city of Athens.

Manchester hosts NAMDA Novice 2018

Manchester is 2018’s host of NAMDA Novice, the largest novice debating tournament in the north and midlands of Britain. 40 teams participated over the Saturday in 4 preliminary rounds, the semifinals, and the finals.

The MDU are also excited to announce that we enjoyed competitive success at NAMDA Novice! Two of our teams managed to advance to the finals: Manchester AK (Will Allsopp and Ariadni Maria Kouvatsou) and Manchester AS (Yusuf Steel and Zara Alam). MDU debaters who also tabbed in the top 10 speakers of the tournament were Yusuf (1st), Will (6th), Zara and Nur Sharbek (joint 9th).

Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer – Thank You For Sponsoring Us!

We’re happy to announce Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer will be sponsoring us this academic year. Freshfields provide legal services to companies around the world, being among the top ranked law firms in the UK, Europe and Asia. They also have an office in Arndale House, right here in Manchester.

If you’re thinking of a career in law, check out their graduate scheme for more info about them!




MDU voted Society of the Year!

We are proud to announce that we won “Best Political and Campaigning Society” and “Society of the Year” in the University of Manchester Students’ Union Awards.

Thank-you to all of you who have helped make this year so successful. It’s a pleasure to be part of a community that is so thoughtful, welcoming and generous with its time. We’ve achieved some special things this year – let’s work towards making next year even better!

Best Society of the Year 2015


DWF Manchester IV 2015

Thanks to DWF for sponsoring our event and helping us make it happen. Click here to find out more about graduate opportunities with DWF

With over 250 people involved in this years Manchester IV, it promises to DWF Manchester IV 2015be a huge weekend for debating. Our CA team consists of  Adam Hawksbee, Amanda Moorghen, Cerys Bradley and Daan Welling, coupled our equity officer Fiona Brittle  – all eminent speakers & judges.


  • Pro-Am Break Winners: Birmingham Regina
    Speakers: Becki Howarth and Katie Ratcliffe
  • ESL Break Winners: Leiden A                           Click here for the ESL Final Video!
    Speakers: Roel Becker and Sarah Rust
  • Open Final Competitors:
    OG – Strathclyde A                  OO – Oxford SC
    CG – Cambridge WW               CO – Karaoke Tiebreaker
  • Winners of the Manchester IV 2015: Cambridge WW
    Speakers: Ashish Kumar and Michael Dunn

Congratulations to all the teams & speakers involved!

CA Workshops Playlist:


Day One
  • Round 1: This House believes that the EU should openly fund secular, pro democracy and pro human rights political parties and civil society groups in countries with oppressive regimes
  • Round 2: This House believes that the NAACP* should publicly condemn white artists who appropriate black culture.
    *National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, an advocacy group for African-Americans
  • Round 3: This House believes that companies that produce pornography should be run by a co-operative of their female performers
  • Round 4: This House would transfer complete strategic control of the NHS to a body of experts, appointed by experienced medical practitioners and not accountable to Parliament
  • Round 5: This House believes that Governments should not publicly discuss anti-terror laws and state security in the wake of terrorist attacks
Day Two
  • Quarter-Finals: This House, as an up and coming female artist, would publicly decline a leading role in a Roman Polanski film [an info slide was provided]
  • Semi-Finals: This House would criminalise the the use and creation of unauthorised anonymous communication providers and network browsers [an info slide was provided]
  • Pro-Am Final: This House believes that states should not commemorate the veterans of conflicts that are now considered to be unjustified
  • ESL Final: This House believes that, even if human life could be extended indefinitely, society should choose to end each individuals life at 100 years
  • Open Final: This House welcomes the rise of the far left in continental Europe (e.g. Syriza, Podemos)

Manchester IV Video:

 Competition Photos:

Success at Red Rose Novice 2014

Well done to everyone at Red Rose Novice Tournament, it was a very strong showing for Manchester. Congratulations must go to two of our novices, Isabel Adame and Cory Hooper, who won the entire competition!

With that and multiple students making it onto the top 10 speaker list, four fighting their way to the final, it was an exceptionally successful day for our competitors.

Also it should be celebrated that Katie McKellar and Becky Montacute broke as Judges! Good job Manchester.

Image credits – Alex Treece, Becky Montacute, Isabel Adame