March 2013

Leiden Open

Tilbury House sent one team to the Leiden Open/Netherlands. Read ahead what it was like:

Biertje? Reporting from Leiden Open 2013

Windmills? Check. Tiny canals? Of course. A gazillion of bicycles? Hell yeah! When going to Leiden, every stereotype of a Dutch city you might have heard of seems to be true. Nevertheless, Leiden is a nice little city with a well-recognized University (oldest in Holland). Same applies for its Debating Society being chaired by the current EUDC Champion Daan Welling. When he and his kind colleagues had convoked to participate in the Leiden Open, over 50 teams followed his call; among them many internationals like us, Tilbury House A.

Having started with two rounds of classic BP style debating on Friday, it quickly became clear that we would be competing within a strong tab. After two close losses, we had to fuel some self-esteem at the social in a private students bar afterwards. Several beers and some amusing conversations later, at least we claimed the title as last standing team for the night.

New Momentum

The next morning, a slight sleep deficit as well as an encounter with a wooden mattress did not necessarily raise our chances for succeeding in the first debate of the day. However, it ended up being our first win of the tournament. Here we go! The following two rounds kept as caught in some kind of a rollercoaster as we both lost and won one more time. All in all we finished midfield both as speakers and as a team, leaving enough room to improve next time.

Finally, a 3:1 Dutch/German final debate with Bonaparte Barlaeus from Amsterdam winning out of closing opposition closed the tournament on Saturday night. The second social of the weekend then had all participants gathered at another student’s venue: cheap beer and cocktails, disco music and some dancing put the final mark on a well-organized tournament with likeable conveners, lots of nice folks, high competition and some delicious catering (unfortunately no frikandel, no fries). We truly recommend to looking up Leiden Open, even if it’s just for windmills and tiny canals.


All motions at a glance:

1. THW Criminalize Gang Membership

2. THBT Adoption Agencies Should Seek to Place Children in Families with a Similar Culture to those of their Biological Parents

3. THW require re-ratification of all international treaties, including the EU, by popular referendum every decade

4. THBT the International Community Should Treat Espionage as a Justification for Military Retaliation

5. THBT the news media should also represent the criminal’s point of view when reporting on criminal convictions


Infoslide: Some people believe that they were born LGBT, some LGBT people believe that it is a choice that they made. Currently, the LGBT movement uses being “born this way” as a way of legitimizing equal rights.

THBT the LGBT rights movement should abandon the “born this way” campaign.


In times of war, THBT relatives of civilians killed by the military occupation, should be able to sue the soldiers responsible for their relative’s death in civilian court.

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