Secondary school students were talked down from a winning streak in a public speaking competition.

The Larkmead School team from Abingdon made it to the third stage of the Rotary Club’s Youth Speaks contest, but were outspoken by students from Berkshire.

They made their final speech at the United Reformed Church in Marlow, Buckinghamshire, last Thursday, and were beaten by a team from the Licensed Victuallers’ School, Ascot.

Larkmead coach Mary Stevens said: “Larkmead School was proud to attend the district final.

“Though defeated by an excellent team from Ascot, the students gained a fantastic insight into the high standards of this competition.

“They and their coach would like to thank the Rotary Club of Abingdon for their incredible support and encouragement which has truly raised their aspirations and whetted their appetite for participation in the world of public speaking and debate.

“From little acorns grow big oak trees and perhaps future leaders will emerge from Abingdon, thanks to the investment made in our young people by the Rotarians.”