Having won the Dean Close round of the Young Entrepreneurs Competition, a Fourth Form group went along to GCHQ to compete in the Regional Final, pitting their product against teams from schools such as Cheltenham College, The Crypt and Wycliffe. The team’s winning product was The “Dorothy”, a pen that can translate languages for you as you write. It also has some Maths capabilities.

After arriving at GCHQ, and showing IDs to get in, the team settled down into the competition, judged by some impressive characters from GCHQ. There were some great ideas from other teams, and everyone spoke with great confidence and handled the tricky questions from the judges with poise and certainty. During the break, the competitors were able to chat with members of staff from GCHQ and have a go at different activities – languages, artificial bombs and even the Enigma machine. After the break, the results were announced. Dean Close were not placed in the top 3 but the deserved winners of the competition were Archway.

This competition was preceded by a day at Dean Close run by gFutures for the Young Entrepreneurs in Fourth Form. The day consisted of working in small groups to come up with a product or service related to business or an idea to do with communications and technology. Once the idea was conceived and put down on paper, it was presented to the rest of the year. There were many wacky and weird ideas: the “U desk”; the “Intech 7”; the “Proband”; and the “Write4me”.

The winning team consisted of Tom Richardson, Elena Valdes, George Tang, Oliver Melville Smith and Henry Blunt. Unfortunately Lily Talbot missed the Final as she was poorly. It was a great experience and very interesting to hear from people who work at GCHQ and their different roles. The only disappointment was not being able to go into the “Doughnut” itself!