Youngsters in North Tyneside have been voting in their thousands to select their top candidates to represent their views locally, regionally and nationally.
A total of 27 youngsters put themselves forward for one of the coveted positions of either North Tyneside’s Young Mayor or Member of UK Youth Parliament.
And after almost 3,700 young people cast their votes in preliminary voting, eight are still in the running and are now on the campaign trail.
Each one has put forward a manifesto, outlining what they would do as Young Mayor or Member of UK Youth Parliament, and why their peers should vote for them.
The Young Mayor will hold office for a year and will act as a figurehead for young people in the borough, giving them a voice and influencing decisions made by North Tyneside Council’s Elected Mayor, Cabinet and Council.
Also in post for one year, the other successful candidate will join 600 others from across the UK as part of Youth Parliament. Their job will be to represent young people from the borough, taking forward their views and debating on their behalf locally, regionally and nationally.
North Tyneside Elected Mayor, Norma Redfearn said: “I am delighted that so many young people have had the chance to take part in local democracy, whether that’s by putting themselves forward for one of the positions or by voting in the preliminary elections.
“I would like to say well done and thank you to all of the 27 young candidates who stood and wish the final eight the best of luck.”
The final four candidates for Young Mayor are:
- Bethany Amer, 12, George Stephenson High School
- Kieran Archer, 16, Monkseaton High School
- Terri Metcalfe-Shaw, 15, Whitley Bay High School
- Madelyn Wood, 11, Churchill Community College
While the four standing for Member of UK Youth Parliament are:
- Dillon Blevins, 16, Churchill Community College
- Anya Croskery, 12, Valley Gardens Middle School
- Rachel Harvey, 15, Whitley Bay Student Support Centre
- Zara Smith, 13, George Stephenson High School
The eight prospective candidates will now have just over three weeks to campaign for votes, before elections take place between 22 and 24 February.
Elections will be held in North Tyneside schools, colleges and other selected venues and young people aged 11-19 (in year groups 7-13) who live, work or attend school or college in North Tyneside can vote.
The two elected young people will take up their positions at the end of February.
For more information on the eight candidates, and how to vote, visit www.northtyneside.gov.uk or call (0191) 643 8215.
The manifestos of the young people will soon be available to watch on the council’s YouTube channel, search for ‘North Tyneside Council’.