Ormiston Bolingbroke hosts BBC’s ‘Any Questions’ in run up to polling day

Ormiston Bolingbroke Academy played host to a lively debate when leading politicians from all of the major parties took questions from a packed audience as part of BBC Radio 4’s ‘Any Questions.’

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The long-standing programme, first broadcast on the BBC in 1948, has been chaired by Jonathan Dimbleby since 1987 and runs in a similar format to BBC’s Question Time broadcast on BBC 1.

The range of high-profile panellists included: Kier Starmer, Labour’s Shadow Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union; Damien Green, the Work and Pensions Secretary; Paul Nuttall MEP, leader of UKIP; and Jo Swinson, the Liberal Democrat candidate for East Dunbartonshire and former Minister for Women and Equalities in the Coalition Government.

The panel was quizzed on a range of important topics, from Brexit to schools funding, and all came under intense scrutiny and robust questioning from an engaged and passionate audience.

Several Sixth Form students, including Deputy Head Boy, Tom Collins, and Deputy Head Girl, Megan Parr, had the exciting opportunity to speak with the leading politicians after the broadcast. They were joined by year 9 student Ewan Jago, Halton’s Representative on the Youth Parliament.

Ensuring students are engaged in politics and the world around them is a key part of OAT’s ‘Enrichment Charter’ which is designed to ensure every OAT student develops an understanding of current affairs in the UK and across the world, including democratic processes and issues that may affect their health and emotional well-being.

Allan Bird, Teaching Assistant at Ormiston Bolingbroke Academy, who co-ordinated the event with BBC Radio 4, said:

"It was a huge honour for Ormiston Bolingbroke Academy to host ‘Any Questions’, particularly in the run up to the exciting snap election. Although organising a live event of this scale was a daunting task, I’m very pleased that the evening was such as great success.  

"It was really exciting for all of us to meet the politicians and, of course, Jonathan Dimbleby and his team. It was most certainly an experience that our students will be unlikely to forget!"