AN ELOQUENT student is celebrating after winning the quarter final of the world’s largest youth public speaking event.

Honey Scott won the top prize – a £100 gift certificate – in the quarter final of the Jack Petchey Speak Out Challenge.

The Hedingham School pupil gave a prize-winning speech entitled ‘Perfect’.

Honey, 15, from Sible Hedingham, also won a shot at the semi-final and could go on to represent the whole of north Essex in the competition final, which will be held in London’s West End.

Winning the final would see Honey scoop £5,000 with £2,000 as a bursary for herself and £3,000 for her school.

Her speech touched on the cost of perfection, saying “you don’t see the unhappiness caused along the way to get to the perfect lifestyle”.

Honey describes herself as “ambitious, confident and weird”, and her ambition is to help as many people as she can.

She said: “I’m so shocked that I won. I am so excited for more people to hear my speech as I want the message to get to as many people as possible.”

This year more than 20,000 Year 10 students aged 14 to 15 in more than 500 state schools in London and Essex will take part in the Speak Out Challenge.

They gets an all-day public speaking workshop from communications charity the Speakers Trust.

A speech contest is held at the end of the one-day course and each school then selects a speaker to go through to the quarter-finals.

During the training, students are given the skills and the confidence to develop and deliver a speech on a subject which is important to them.