The Sylvan Debating Club

...debating since 1868

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The Sylvan Debating Club was founded in 1868. More specifically (in words taken from the official history)  “The inception of the Club was discussed on top of one of the Green Atlas buses which ran from the City through Baker Street and the Abbey Road to the Prince of Wales Hotel in St. John’s Wood. A conversation took place between Mr. Alfred Harmsworth and one of the other Founders and resulted in the first Meeting being held at the aforementioned Hotel on January 6th, 1868.”

And thus the Sylvans (as they became known) have continued for over 6 reigns and 140 years right to the present day, giving pleasure, practice and a voice to those who “desired the opportunity of giving vent in speech to their opinions on every subject interesting to man”.

A recent development has been the decision of the Sylvans to operate closely with another independent body – The Cogers – who are in fact the world’s oldest debating club, established in the City of London in 1755. This works to the mutual benefit of both organisations, giving each others’ members the opportunity to engage both in the Sylvan Club’s style of motion-based debating and the Cogers different style of lively current affairs debating.