Young people across Darlington have chosen a ‘curriculum for life’ as the top priority in a ballot on what should be debated by the UK Youth Parliament.

A record 3,533 young people took part in the ‘Make Your Mark’ vote, a 36 per cent turnout, with the top five issues in the Borough being a ‘curriculum for life’, cuts to the NHS, tackling racism and religious discrimination, lowering the voting age to 16 and mental health.

Nationally, 978,216 votes were cast by young people aged 11 to 18-years-old to decide what issues will be debated by members of the UK Youth Parliament when it takes over the Commons on Friday 11 November.

The five issues to be debated are:

  • A ‘Curriculum for Life’
  • Tackling Racism and Religious Discrimination
  • Public Transport
  • Lowering the voting age to 16
  • Cuts to the NHS

Darlington Youth MP Jessica Halliday, who will be taking part in the debate, said:

“In my first year as Darlington Youth MP I could not have hoped for a better turnout. The House of Commons debate is up and coming and I am excited about debating the issues voted for by the young people of Darlington.”

Councillor Cyndi Hughes, Darlington Borough Council’s cabinet member for children and young people, added:

“It’s great to see that more and more young people are getting involved with Make Your Mark and voting on the issues that matter to them. I hope that this trend will continue and that schools and colleges will also support the campaigns to help make a difference to young people’s lives.”

This year’s Make Your Mark debate in the Commons will coincide with Armistice Day, marking 98 years since the Armistice which took place during the First World War.

For more details log onto the website at and for more information about Darlington’s Youth MP visit