Double Win for Waverley at Area 33 Contests

After the International Speech and Evaluation contest which took place in our club on Thursday 15th March, three weeks later, on Saturday 7th April, the second round was hosted in Rosyth, this time for all the winners of the Area 33 contest.

The Waverley Communicators members who were to represent our club were Paul Bailey and Dan Haycraft for the International Speech Contest, and Marcin Radecki and Jacek Lasota for the Evaluation contest. Because of a personal commitment, however, Marcin Radecki wasn’t able to go and was replaced by Michael McLernan who came third in the club contest.

In the fascinating venue of Lodge 1159, a selected group of Toastmasters members had prepared the place to welcome the participants. The first part was dedicated to the Speech contest: the audience listened to seven speeches of high quality and diversified subjects, from the adventurous life of the ancestor of a Toastmaster member to the nocturnal incursions of a cat, to a daring flight to return home where everything which could possibly go wrong… went wrong!

Our Paul Bailey amused all the listeners with a sharp-witted analysis of the different types of expenses met by our organisation, while Dan Haycraft struck everybody with the tale of what really happened with Hurricane Katrina, revealing some of the hidden facts which were never covered by the media. It was a highly effective speech, and Dan was extraordinary good in what could be defined, without any doubt, the best speech he has ever delivered in a Toastmaster meeting.

After a short break, where we had the chance to taste some delicious and slightly spiced Indian rolls, the Evaluation Contest started. Jacek Lasota and Michael McLernan, like the other three competitors, listened to an amusing speech about the art of negotiation. They perfectly evaluated the speech with the sharpness we know so well when they evaluate in our meetings.

Time to count the ballots and the final results were astounding: Paul Bailey and Michael McLernan took first place in both contests! An incredible outcome for our club, and an even more satisfactory one, if we consider that last year, at the International Speech Contest, the first place was taken by our own Neil MacLure.

The winners can rest and enjoy this moment, but not for very long. In fact, it’s not over yet and they have to be ready for the new step in the competition. On 21st April there will be the Division S contest, and this time it will take place in Aberdeen.

All our members are invited to support our representatives on that day, but for the moment let’s also thank you Dan Haycraft and Jacek Lasota who, although they didn’t qualify, they gave an exceptional performance for which they should be very proud… as are we of them.

Post written by Omar Martini – Secretary, Waverley Communicators

And The Winner Is………..

Post written by Moira Beaton DTM

Congratulations to the winners of Waverley Communicators International Speech Contest and Evaluation Contest which took place on Thursday 19th March.

Jacek Lasota wins first place in the International speech Contest

Jacek Lasota wins first place in Waverley Communicators International speech Contest

Jacek Lesota came first in the club’s International Speech Contest and

John Wood wins first place in the Evaluation Contest

John Wood wins first place in Waverley Communicators Evaluation Contest

John Wood was first in the club’s Evaluation Contest.

Both Jacek and John went on to the next round yesterday when they represented the club at the Area 30 contest, competing against the contest winners from the other clubs in Edinburgh.

Jacek placed second in the Area 30 International Speech Contest and John won the Area 30 Evaluation Contest.

Because Division S has only 3 Areas (Area 30, Area 43 and Area 60), the first and second placed winners are allowed to compete in the next round. Usually,it’s just speakers who have been placed first.

This means that Jacek, as well as John, will represent Area 30 in the Division S Contest on Saturday 18th April in Falkirk.

Good luck to both Jacek and John!

Moira Beaton is a member of Waverley Communicators and Thistle Speakers Advanced Club. She is also assistant Division S Governor.

World Champion of Public Speaking In Edinburgh – Jock Elliot


If you’ve ever wondered what makes a Toastmasters World Champion of Public Speaking, you can find out this Wednesday. And you don’t even need to travel far.


Jock Elliot, the 2011 Champion of World Speaking will deliver a keynote speech and a masterclass in public speaking in our very own Waverley venue – the 28 York Place Hotel.


Who is Jock Elliot?
He is an Australian Toastmaster from Bongaree in Queensland, and for him, Saturday 20th August 2011 was the culmination of 36 years in Toastmasters, competing in nearly 380 Toastmasters speech contests, reaching the world finals six times and finally realising his lifelong goal of becoming World Champion.


The International Speech Contest 2011 began six months before the finals at the TMI convention in Las Vegas, Nevada, with 30,000 contestants from 116 countries competing at club level. Jock Elliot won his club contest in Australia and progressed through area, division, district and qualifying levels before finally reaching the international stage where he competed against 8 other international finalists.


In his winning speech, ‘Just So Lucky’, he talks about the value of close connections with family and friends. You can watch the speech at the beginning of this post or, better still, don’t watch it and come on Wednesday and hear Jock deliver it in person.
The event is organised by Haymarket Toastmasters and here are the details. There are still tickets available.

Date: Wednesday 21st May 2014

Time: 7-9.30pm

Place: The 28 York Place Hotel, Edinburgh

Cost: £15

The Programme:
Part 1
19.00 – 20.00
Keynote: “The Journey”.


How it took Jock 36 years to become an overnight success.
A story of persistence, growth, disappointment and triumph, this keynote address is the story of one man’s quest after the World Championship of Public Speaking, told through some of the speeches that took him to the peak, including the record breaking six finals in the championships.


20.00 – 20.15 Network Break with coffee / tea + biscuits
Part 2
20.15 – 21.15


As a professional speechwriter, trainer in presentation skills and mentor for academic, sales, government and private clients, Jock is able to see to the core issues of presentations, identify the point being made (or more usually not) and help tailor it to suit the intended audience, achieving economy, clarity, direction and power. This is a unique opportunity for one Toastmaster to present all or part of their speeches and get a world class review and guidance.


There are still tickets left and you can book at



Speech contests and FAQ’s

Speechcontest_certThere’s a flurry of activity going on the club. Why?

Because the next meeting is the club’s International Speech and Evaluation contests.

Eileen Scott, the  club’s SAA, has ordered the trophies, printed the certificates and bought the biscuits.

Richard McMahon, the club’s VPE is busy making sure that we have – contestants for both contests, a ‘genial host’ to act as contest chair, enthusiastic members to judge and time the speeches and evaluations, and counters to count the ballots.

Now, all we need to do is make sure we have enough members and guests in the audience to clap and encourage the contestants. So don’t miss it!

If you are new to speech contests, here are some common FAQ’s:

Who can compete in the International Speech Contest

Any  member in good standing who has completed 6 manual speeches.

Who can compete in the Evaluation Contest?

Any member in good standing (no 6 speech rule).

What happens at an evaluation contest?

A member from another Toastmasters club delivers a 5-7 minute general speech. All the evaluation contestants leave the room; they have 5 minutes to write their evaluation and hand their notes to the contest SAA; when their name is called, they are given their evaluation notes; they walk to the ‘stage’ and deliver their 3 minute evaluation.

Who can be a judge?

Any member in good standing.

Who can be a Timer or Counter?

Any member in good standing.

What happens if  I win the club contest?

You go through to the next round – the Area 30 contest which, this year, takes place is in Edinburgh on Sunday 6th April.

What happens if I win the Area contest?

You go through to the Division S contest which, this year, is in Edinburgh on Saturday 12th April.

What happens if I win the Division contest?

You compete at the District 71 contest which, this year, is in Dublin at the D71 conference which is from 9th to 11th May.

What happens if I win the D71 contest?

The winner of the  D71 evaluation contest goes home with a big grin, and a big shield they can display on their mantelpiece.

The winner of the  D71 International Speech contest goes to the International Speech Contest finals which, this year, is in Malaysia in August. They also wonder why they took part in the club contest in the first place because this is now hard work!

Joking aside, making it to the finals is a huge achievement and everyone in District 71 will be cheering you on, not least your fellow members at Waverley.

Why compete?

Competing in a Toastmasters contest is not only one of the best and fastest ways to accelerate your speaking skills, it’s also good fun, boosts your confidence, and gives you a great sense of achievement once it’s over.

I want to take part.

If you want to take part, either as a contestant, or a role-player, please contact Richard McMahon at

Post written by Moira Beaton DTM

VPPR, Waverley Communicators

Contest Journey

Club Contest

On Thursday 21st March 2013, eight members of  Waverley Communicators (Kevin McKay, Pauline Dix, Stephen Dix, Moira Beaton, AJ Cullen, Eileen Scott, Aideen O’Malley, and Graeme Buck) stepped up to the mark and took part in the club’s International Speech and Evaluation Contests.

Participating in a contest can be a nerve tingling experience, but also a richly rewarding one.  It’s a great way to hone your speech delivery.

All the contestants did themselves proud in front of an appreciative audience.  There were astute evaluations and splendid speeches.

The proceedings were conducted in a warm and harmonious spirit with Kevin Miller at the helm as Contest Chair.

Pauline Dix - Winner of International Speech Contest and Brian Duffy, President Waverley Communicators

Pauline Dix – Winner of Waverley’s International Speech Contest

The Club Contest winners were Pauline Dix and Moira Beaton (seen below with Brian Duffy, Club President) who went forward to represent Waverley Communicators at the Area 30 Contest, hosted by our club on Saturday 13th April.

Moira Beaton - Winner of Waverley's Evaluation Contest

Moira Beaton – Winner of Waverley’s Evaluation Contest

Area 30 Contest

The event buzzed with excitement with over 45 attendees from the nine Toastmasters clubs across the central belt.

The contests were chaired by Waverley Communicator’s Eileen Scott (seen in the centre of  the picture below – no certificate but she did receive a nice box of chocolates later!), with the judging panel led by Jim Boyd from Linlithgow Speakers.

The organisation and leadership skills of Waverley Communicators members came to the fore, and the positive feedback received showed how much the contestants and the audience appreciated the hospitality shown.

It took a fantastic team effort to stage such a wonderful event – well done to all!

Area 30 Contest - International Speech Contestants

Area 30 Contest – International Speech Contestants

James Reeve (the man in the kilt) from Capital Communicators won the Area 30 International Speech Contest with a great speech called ‘Homogeneity’.

Our contestant Pauline Dix (to the right of Eileen and the banner) did the club proud.

Moira Beaton was a worthy winner of the Area 30 Evaluation Speech Contest, much to the delight of the Waverley Communicators members in the audience.

Moira was awarded a glistening glamorous glass trophy for an insightful and motivational evaluation.

Area 30 Contest - Moira Beaton, Winner Evaluation Contest and Kevin Lee, Area 30 Governor

Area 30 Contest – Moira Beaton, Winner Evaluation Contest and Kevin Lee, Area 30 Governor

And the journey continued….

Moira, James and a train load of well-wishing revellers from Waverley and other clubs in Area 30, travelled down to the Division E Contest in York on Sunday 28th April.

The Scots at the Division E Contest, York

The Scots at the Division E Contest, York

Division E Contest, York - Moira posing next to our club banner.

Division E Contest, York – Moira posing next to our club banner.

Moira and James are both accomplished speakers and delivered speeches to a very high standard.

There was much anticipation and encouragement for all the contestants from a 70 strong contingent of attendees.

On this occasion the winners were from Midlands/North of England clubs with Tina Swami and Gillian Caldicott progressing to the UK & Ireland District Conference, 10-12 May in Torquay.

The winner of the District International Speech Contest then goes all the way to Cincinnati, USA!!

What a journey!  It highlights the opportunities that Toastmasters provides, whether as a contestant, as an organiser, as a Contest Chair, as a role player, and as a member of the audience learning from and supporting others.

Toastmasters is a fantastic organisation to be part of, come along and see how our club can help you to develop, and give you the support to enable you to reach your full potential.

Post written by Brian Duffy, CC – President Waverley Communicators