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East Riding chooses its first Youth Parliament members

Students from Beverley and the surrounding area standing in the UK Youth Parliament attended the declaration of the county-wide election on 3rd March.

Twenty-five candidates stood for election in the East Riding’s first youth parliament vote for 10 years.

Young people aged 11-18 from across the area voted to choose two candidates and two deputies during February, with the sole focus on the students’ manifestoes and pledges.

The individuals who stood remained anonymous until the results of the election were announced at Beverley Memorial Hall.

I led my manifesto on extra time and money on extra-curricular lessons, free sanitary products for women and girls and more support for people who have difficulty with their behaviour.

freya edwards

Nearly 2,500 votes were cast in the east section of the East Riding, which Freya Edwards, of Driffield School & Sixth Form, will represent with deputy Tegan Broomhead, of East Riding College in Bridlington.

Freya campaigned on the following issues:
● Better support for children with behaviour issues
● More time/money spent on extracurricular lessons
● Free sanitary products for girls and women.

She was presented with a certificate by Cllr Jonathan Owen, leader of East Riding of Yorkshire Council and East Wolds and Coastal ward councillor, and told Beverley Life that she can’t wait to make a difference on behalf of young people in the area.

“I’m really excited to be representing the East Riding on the UK Youth Parliament and looking forward to it,” said Freya.

Freya Edwards

“I decided to stand as a candidate after sitting in an assembly at school. I’m quite interested in politics and thought ‘let’s just see how this goes’ and it’s gone really well.

“I led my manifesto on extra time and money on extra-curricular lessons, free sanitary products for women and girls and more support for people who have difficulty with their behaviour.

“These could be ways that school life could be improved and it would be a safer and happier place to be.

“It’s a chance to make a difference and it’s an opportunity to perhaps have a career in politics in the future.”

Due to the large number of candidates, the election was split into two geographical areas east and west.

The representative in the west will be Aonpreeya Petchatchua, of South Hunsley School, with Thomas Edmiston, of Hymers College, acting as her deputy.

After being impressed by the candidates and their campaigns, Cllr Owen predicts big futures for the youngsters.

“I think that the state the world is currently in, everyone has a view on politics,” he said.

“We have just lived through COVID and what an experience that was for all youngsters to go through, especially with their education.

“They have also seen what is happening in Europe and they all have strong opinions.

“It’s nice that their views can be put forward at this age. They are really enthusiastic and I have been so impressed by the candidates.

“The manifestoes were fantastic and all included issues that are current, such as climate change and their rights as youngsters.

“I can see many people in this room having a future career in politics or a very good career in other areas.”

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