Youth democracy is in full swing in North Tyneside

Young Mayor

A double search is underway in North Tyneside to find the next Young Mayor and Member of UK Youth Parliament.

Nominations are now open for young people to put themselves forward for one of the prestigious positions.

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: “It’s important that we include our young people in the decision making process, give them a voice on issues that directly affect them and help them to be active citizens – and what better way to do so than through these two brilliant opportunities.

“Our current Young Mayor, Abbie, and Member of Youth Parliament, Rebecca, do a fantastic job and I always look forward to hearing about all their wonderful projects and upcoming plans to improve the borough for young people.

“I’d like to encourage young people to put themselves forward and wish good luck to those who do.”

Young Mayor Abbie Armstrong, who is aged 13 and attends St Thomas More RC Academy, added: “Being Young Mayor has opened so many doors to me – it’s been such a great experience. I’ve met lots of interesting and inspirational people, and I’ve made so many new friends.

“I have had loads of highlights but I particularly enjoyed meeting Robbie Fowler and other footballers at Anfield football ground, in Liverpool, as part of a Show Racism the Red Card competition.

“Hosting my own Young Mayor’s music festival, ‘The Event @ Segedunum’, was also fantastic. It showcased the brilliant talent of young musicians in North Tyneside.”

Since being elected, Abbie has worked with her own Youth Council and Cabinet to develop initiatives that benefit young people in North Tyneside, and ensured that young people have been consulted on decisions impacting them. She’s also worked with the Member of Youth Parliament, Rebecca Moore.

Marden High School student Rebecca, who is 16, added: “I’ve loved my time as a Member of UK Youth Parliament. I’ve had the chance to travel to London and debate with other people in the House of Parliament – which was amazing.

“One of my favourite things was taking part in the UK Youth Parliament Annual Sitting, which is when all of the members of UK Youth Parliament meet up to raise the topics that will be taken forward on behalf of young people.

“My Takeover Challenge was also great fun – I travelled to the Home Office in London to shadow the Second Permanent Secretary, Oliver Robbins. When I was there, I had the chance to go to a government meeting and then visit the Cabinet Office.”

Young people aged between 11 and 18 who live, work or attend school or college in North Tyneside, are eligible to stand for one of the positions in the election, and take part in the vote.

The successful candidates hold the posts for 12 months, from the end of February. Most of their duties are arranged outside of the school day. They are also supported to make certain they honour all school commitments.

Nominations close on January 7, and preliminary online voting then opens from January 11 until January 22, to whittle down the final top four candidates.

Final voting for the coveted position takes place in schools and selected council buildings between February 22 and 24.

The preliminary voting process was introduced in 2010, due to extremely high levels of interest in the Young Mayor position.

Nomination packs are available from, by emailing or by calling (0191) 643 8215.