A DEBATING contest saw students go head to head to discuss subjects such as knife crime and compulsory vaccinations.

Barnard Castle and Darlington Rotary Clubs organise the annual event, which took place for the second time.

Teams from Darlington Youth Partnership - which takes forward issues that children and young people from the borough of Darlington have identified and campaigns for change to happen, Teesdale School and Sixth Form in Barnard Castle and All Saints Academy in Ingleby Barwick, were cheered on by supporters as they debated the reasons behind the rise in knife crime and whether childhood vaccinations should be compulsory.

All Saints Academy won the competition.

Darlington Youth Partnership were runners up.

Matthew Read, director of the Bowes Centre for art, craft and design at the Bowes museum, in Barnham Castle, who chaired the judging panel, said: “All the judges were very impressed by the outstanding grasp and depth of knowledge about the difficult issues being debated.”

The winners, All Saints Academy, received a trophy and individual awards, and all participants received certificates from the Mayors of Darlington, Cllr Nick Wallis, and Barnard Castle Cllr John Blissett.