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Winners announced in Lord Toulson essay prize

Congratulations to Helena, Hannah and Hari, 2021 winners of our annual law essay competition for secondary school students.

The annual Lord Toulson essay prize is awarded to a secondary school student who shows an outstanding understanding of, and ability in, law. The prize is named for the late Lord Roger Toulson, Justice of the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom and Jesus College alumnus.

Sponsored by the law firm Herbert Smith Freehills, it’s intended to give students a chance to engage with important legal debates and to explore the kind of issues that they would be exposed to in a Cambridge Law degree.

Helena Barraclough, currently in Year 12 at Badminton School, took the top prize with her essay discussing the proposal: “The government should take control of unoccupied homes and allocate them to the homeless.”

“We were incredibly impressed by the number and quality of the entries we received this year."

Dr Claire Fenton-Glynn, Fellow in Law and Admissions Tutor

We received over 160 entries this year, from across eight countries. This was by far the largest number of entries we’ve received in the six years the prize has been running. Entries were assessed on the student’s ability to think critically about the question and on the quality and originality of the argument made.

The 2021 winners were:

  • 1st prize: Helena Barraclough
  • 2nd prize: Hannah Jeong
  • 3rd prize: Hari Shankaran

Twenty other entries were highly commended by the judges.

Law Fellow and Admissions Tutor, Dr Claire Fenton-Glynn said: “We were incredibly impressed by the number and quality of the entries we received this year. The question raised difficult issues about the intersection between law and policy, and the winning entries showed an ability to think critically about the question, each approaching it from their own unique perspective.”

Find out more about studying Law at Jesus, or speak to our current students about living and learning in Cambridge.