Tom Bletsoe, 18-year old from Cambridgeshire (UK), has become Britains’ youngest politician after he won the election for councillor for St Ives town council’s South ward. The independently registered candidate won the election by 41% votes.
“When I heard there was a vacancy on the council I started talking to people about going for it,” he said.
“Some of my friends were a bit sceptical and thought I was crazy, but I did get a lot of support from them, and from my family and teachers.”
He campaigned on issues he referred to as “his passions” – enthusing St Ives’ youngsters to become more involved in the future of the town, and encouraging the council to provide more activities for teenagers.
“I also really wanted to get involved in the St Ives Town Plan,” Tom said.
“Questionnaires were sent out and the responses have been collated now. I’m really looking forward to getting on with that in the spring.”
“I want to make sure that St Ives is a really nice place for people to shop, and a town that they want to live in.”Source: news.bbc.co.uk
Tom spent 2 months campaigning for the position and plans to take a year out of school to concentrate on his new role and take a night class in A-Level politics before going to university.
Tom, who was a former chairman of his sixth form committee at school, hopes to get the youth of St Ives more involved in the running of the town and turn around any negative perceptions that residents may have of them.
‘It will be busy juggling school and council work but other councillors work full time and have family commitments, so I think I have it quite easy,’ he said.
‘I’m out of school by 3pm each day so it will be nice for residents to have a councillor who is around in the afternoons.’
‘You can die for your country at 18 so why shouldn’t you be able to serve your country in a small way on a town council at 18 too?’ Source: www.dailymail.co.uk
Right now he is in the process of applying for a place in the Guinness Book of Records as the youngest town councillor in the UK.
Does it matter that he is too young to make decisions for the city? Is he a little too inexperienced both academically and professionally for the job? At least people in St Ives don’t think so!