Darlington’s new Youth MP revealed
The election is over, the votes have been counted and the new Youth MP for Darlington has been revealed as Francis Humble.
Five budding politicians came forward as candidates in a bid to represent the borough in the UK Youth Parliament and more than 3,700 young people took part in the election – a 38 per cent turnout.
Francis secured his place as Darlington’s Youth MP with 1,715 votes, which gave him a significant majority of 1,170. The 14-year-old, from Carmel College had campaigned for an increase in the minimum wage for under-18s and an under-16 minimum wage; a free school breakfast for every pupil at every school and a discount card for leisure facilities in Darlington.
His deputy will be David Wilson, 15, from Hummersknott Academy – who campaigned for improvements in physical and mental health facilities and support; giving students the chance to get the best grades they deserve allowing them to re-take exams and provide support for victims and make sure offenders are fairly punished. David won 545 votes.
The votes cast for the other candidates were Dylan Wilson, 545; Htet Wunna, 527 and Jack Houghton, 467.
“It is a real honour for me to be able to represent the young people of Darlington. I promise to do my best to make sure they are heard.
“Congratulations to all the other candidates who led amazing campaigns, particularly David Wilson who I am looking forward to working with. A huge thanks to all those who voted in the election and I look forward to serving Darlington’s young people as best I can.”
Councillor Cyndi Hughes, Darlington Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Children and Young People, added:
“The turnout was a little down on the last Youth MP election but was still terrific, particularly in light of the appalling weather which meant some schools were closed for a few days. The vote was extended as a result and I’m delighted do many young people took the time to have their say.
“I look forward to working with Francis and David in the coming months and hope they enjoy the experience of being part of the UK Youth Parliament.”
The role of Youth MP includes meeting MPs and Local Councillors, holding events and running campaigns.
Voting took place between 26 February and 6 March, with the votes counted and the results announced by the Mayor of Darlington Cllr Jan Taylor in the Council Chamber at Darlington Town Hall on Thursday (8 March).