Countdown to Gaelic Debate

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With just a week left before the 2014 BT Alba Gaelic Debate begins competitors across the country are busy preparing for this prestigious competition.

Twenty two teams from seventeen schools will be taking part in this year’s competition.

This year sees the competition celebrate its fifteenth birthday with the first competition having been held in 1999.

Since its inception the competition has gone from strength to strength and is now seen as one of the highlights in the academic calendar of Scotland’s secondary schools.

The first and second rounds take place on Tuesday and Wednesday the 4th and 5th of November at An Lanntair in Stornoway.

The first round gets underway on Tuesday at 1pm with the second batch of debates starting at 6.30pm.

Those teams who have successfully reached the second round will all debate the same topic on Wednesday the 5th and this begins at 2pm.

The four teams with the highest marks will progress to the final stages of the competition which take place in Edinburgh at the end of November, with the Final itself being held in the Scottish Parliament and also broadcast live on BBC Radio nan Gàidheal.

The Committee is delighted to announce that the BT Alba Gaelic Debate has been shortlisted in the Event of the Year category at the Gaelic Awards which take place in Glasgow on the 19th of November.

This is the second consecutive year that the event has been shortlisted in this category.

Chairperson of the BT Scotland National Gaelic Schools’ Debate Management Committee, Calum Iain MacLeod, commented: “I would actively encourage members of the public to go along and support the 2014 Deasbad BT Alba.

“Through the course of the first two rounds in Stornoway we see some excellent debates – a showcase of the strength of the debating and communication skills of our Gaelic speaking youngsters.

“I would like to express our gratitude to all the funders of the competition, but especially to BT Scotland for the support they have provided over the past 15 years – without that support the competition would simply not have reached the standard that it is now at ”.

Further information on the BT 2014 Debate can be found on the Debate’s website at

Pictured are the winners of the 2014 competition, Sarah MacDonald and Molly MacGregor of Glasgow Gaelic School with Liz Turner and Murdo MacRae of BT Scotland.