Georgina is a reporter for the Rotorua Daily Post.

Rotorua man attempting to talk his way into the record books

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While public speaking may be a fear for many, Rotorua's Richard Perkins is taking it to the extreme by attempting to set a Guinness World Record for the most speeches given in 24 hours.

To be held on March 24, Mr Perkins will attempt 24 speeches in 24 venues in 24 hours.

"I'd like to put Rotorua on the map. I do enjoy Toastmasters which I've been doing for almost 20 years. It's about time we show people that speeches can actually be fun."

The current world record is 21 speeches, and the 24 venues part is a specification from the World Headquarters of Toastmasters International.

Each speech must be 10 minutes long and captured on video, and Mr Perkins said he was not allowed notes while speaking.

"It'll be mentally challenging."

Looking after his voice will be a priority, he said, with his background as a singer coming in handy.

Each of the speeches must be different and Mr Perkins will tailor each speech to suit the needs of the venues he visits.

"I do not do boring ... they will be inspiration and motivational. I've got one or two that are exceptionally hard-hitting, I'll bring that to the right audience. I have the basic how-to-do speech such as a wedding speech or for someone who has passed away."

Despite his excitement, Mr Perkins is still looking for venues and people to fill them, having organised 14 of the 24 venues.

Each speech must have at least 10 new people listening "plus the administrators, the witnesses, the official time keepers".

Mr Perkins wants to encourage locals to get into Toastmasters.

There are seven Toastmasters clubs in Rotorua, and Mr Perkins belongs to five of them.

"For me this is a personal challenge, and putting Rotorua on the map, and letting people know Toastmasters is a place they can go and get confidence when they speak in public. The whole purpose of Toastmasters is to build confidence, not break it down."

For more information and offers of venues contact Bailey Wood at
or Richard Perkins on (021) 028 54388.

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