Ellon pupils put on trial at sheriff court

Pupils from Ellon Academy who were among the schools involved in the tenth annual Aberdeenshire 'mock trials' competition
Pupils from Ellon Academy who were among the schools involved in the tenth annual Aberdeenshire 'mock trials' competition

Ellon Academy pupils joined others from across Aberdeenshire to make their case to be crowned the area’s top legal eagles in a court room competition.

Pupils from four secondary schools became lawyers, witnesses, court staff, jurors – and even court reporters and press officers – when they took part in the tenth annual ‘Mock Trials’ competition recently.

They received tips and a verdict on their performance from legal professionals during the day- long event at Aberdeen Sherriff Court.

Ellon Academy students joined Alford Academy, The Gordon Schools in Huntly, and Mackie Academy at the trials.

Cllr Gillian Owen, Aberdeenshire Council’s Education and Children’s Services Committee chair, said: “The Aberdeenshire ‘Mock Trials’ give pupils a real insight into the court process.

“The competition has inspired pupils who have taken part in the past to forge successful careers in the legal profession.

“However, it also gives those participating a snapshot of the support provided by court staff and jurors too.”

Committee vice-chair Cllr Rosemary Bruce said: “The fact that the Aberdeenshire ‘Mock Trials’ is celebrating its tenth year demonstrates the competition’s enduring success.

“I am sure the pupils taking part will receive a fascinating flavour of a day-in-the-life of our courts and legal system.”

This year’s winning school was Mackie Academy, the Gordon Schools finished runners-up, Alford Academy came third.

The best lawyer was Alex Garrett from Mackie Academy and Georgie Evans, also from Mackie Academy was the best witness.

Sherriff Morag McLaughlin said the event had been a joyous day for the sheriffs to be involved in and praised the pupil’s preparation and the guidance and support given by teachers.