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Children and young people's voice

Three new MYP's announced for Wiltshire 

Declan Kiely (Wiltshire North), Heather Louise Newton (Wiltshire East) and Aanya Mary Verma (Wiltshire West) all took up their term of office on 1 March 2019.

In Wiltshire this year, five candidates stood for election in Wiltshire's constituency areas. 

The British Youth Parliament provides opportunities for those aged 11 to 18 years to use their elected voice to bring about social change through meaningful representation and campaigning.

North area

Watch Declan's manifesto video

I live in Chippenham and go to Hardenhuish School

If I am elected to Youth Parliament I will be campaigning on these important issues. 

  • The first is …. 

As young people, we know that there is one issue which will affect us more than any other, and if we do not act it will only get worse. Climate change has the potential to leave some parts of the world almost uninhabitable. Droughts will get drier, storms more severe, and floods more destructive unless we make drastic changes now.

As an MYP, I will campaign to put pressure on governments at a local and national level to invest in a transition to electric cars. This includes increased provision of charging points, developing technologies used in electric cars, and building renewable sources of energy, to ensure that emissions from generating electricity are actually lower than those from current petrol models. However, I do not believe that this must be at a cost to the country. Investment in new technologies will allow the UK to secure its position as a leader in automotive and energy technologies on the future, bringing many economic benefits.

  • The second is …

I will also campaign to improve the provision of mental health support for young people. The introduction of the new GCSEs has coincided with a sharp rise in the number of suicides and mental health problems among young people. As a result, I believe that it is essential to provide help for those who are struggling with the ever-mounting pressures of exams. If we do not provide adequate support for young people at this critical time, then it can only lead to further tragedies.

We must prevent this.


East area

Watch Heather's manifesto video

I live in Amesbury and go to The Stonehenge School

If I am elected to Youth Parliament I will be campaigning on these important issues. 

  • The first is - A curriculum for life

This is an important part of my manifesto because teenagers at the very start of adult life should be properly prepared with an adequate skill set for the future, not just an academic curriculum.

  • The second is – Votes at 16

Young people deserve to have a say in all elections because we are the future of this country, and denying us that right is unacceptable and unfair when we are supposed to be prepared with enough to vote two years later, with little taught on political issues.

I consider these to be important issues because…

In schools we are only taught the biologies of sex, not healthy and unhealthy relationships and consent.  If we were introduced to more prevalent issues, we have a higher chance of preventing them. We also deserve the right to vote as the result has a definite effect on our generation and future generations.

If I am elected to Youth Parliament, I promise to raise the profile of the issues in my manifesto and to work as hard as possible for all young people, not just East Wiltshire, but the whole of Great Britain.

We need to be the change, until we see the change.


West area

Watch Aanya's manifesto video

I live in Corsham and go to Hardenhuish Secondary School

If I am elected to Youth Parliament I will be campaigning on these important issues. 

The first is Local Transport Charges for children in full time education

This will provide many benefits to the children, parents, local community and even the environment. Children who sometimes miss out on the various clubs and other facilities available to them after school, can use local transport if it’s free. This will keep the children gainfully occupied. It will also help in reducing the stress and costs for parents who transport their children to various places, especially if they have more than one child with different interests and clubs. It will also help in reducing the traffic congestion and ultimately making the environment cleaner by less vehicles on the road.

The second is University Tuition Fees

In a country where we rely heavily on immigration to fill jobs within the key industries such as medicine and information technology it does not make sense to deter prospective students applying for University degrees by raising tuition fees up to £9250 per year. Therefore, the total cost of an undergraduate degree including fees, repayment of maintenance loan, self-catered accommodation, food, course costs, transport and socialising can get up to roughly £62-67,000 pounds for a three-year period. This can be a big deal for a lot of prospective students and their families.

I consider these to be important issues because…

Young people are the future generation and if we invest in them now, the whole society can reap benefits from that in long run.

If I am elected to Youth Parliament, I promise to raise awareness about these issues passionately and devote my time and energy to bring them to the forefront. 

Thank you


Find out more about the current Members of Youth Parliament

Wiltshire Council is a member of the British Youth Council (BYC) which organises and runs the UK Youth Parliament. Wiltshire has three seats on Youth Parliament and holds annual elections for young people aged 11 to 18 years.

The current Members of Youth Parliament (MYPs) for Wiltshire are:

MYPs are expected to participate and have a leadership role within Wiltshire Assembly of Youth.

Wiltshire has three seats on the Youth Parliament, as defined in the attached information.

Youth Parliament offers unique opportunities for those who have an interest in decision-making and in representing the views of peers. These will be young people who want to make positive change and who can, with support, hold their own in some challenging situations.

Members of Youth Parliament are expected to take a leadership role in the Wiltshire Assembly of Youth (WAY). Any young person in Wiltshire can be a member of WAY and we encourage youth participation in the forum and welcome all newcomers who wish to get involved.

For more information contact sarah.banks@wiltshire.gov.uk, 07342 064355.


Children and young people's voice and influence in Wiltshire

Wiltshire Council believes in co-designing and delivering services for children and young people, with children and young people. Such participation and involvement is coordinated by the Council’s Voice and Influence Team.


The team works to ensure the views of children and young people are heard and acted upon by decision-makers. It does this in partnership with schools, colleges, and voluntary sector organisations such as Healthwatch, as well as colleagues in commissioning, early help teams and across children’s services.

The team also manages the Children in Care Council (CiCC) and the Wiltshire Assembly of Youth (WAY). These groups meet monthly and welcome consultations and visitors. CiCC represents the views of Wiltshire’s looked after and care leaving populations. WAY members are either elected by peers, or are co-opted to represent particular groups, including those with special educational needs and/or disability, and those who are lesbian, gay and transgender. Both groups sit on committees, working groups and boards, including the Wiltshire Safeguarding Children’s Board, Corporate Parenting Panel and the Children’s Select Committee, amongst others. Children and young people are supported to sit on interview panels for children’s services staff, consider tender evaluations for children’s services and offer feedback on Council documents and policies.


Young people’s participation in co-production activities must have value to all parties; young people must be offered the opportunity to input directly into all processes and demonstrate their skills, ask questions and offer constructive feedback. Young people with additional needs will be supported to engage as and when appropriate.

When committees, boards, and external organisation are requesting the participation of young people at meetings, events and training, all relevant information must be available in advance, with a clear description of the reason for the request. The Voice and Influence Team coordinates such activity and prepares young people as necessary.


The Voice and Influence Team will be able to advise should you wish to seek the views of children and young people in Wiltshire. Guidance is available to ensure that enough time is given to establish intended outcomes, identify cohorts of young people, and prepare them for the work. Wiltshire Council and external partners requesting young people’s input should set aside sufficient resources to enable that participation. These may include funding for transportation (including an accompanying adult if necessary), cost of meals (in line with legislation regarding young people in the work place), and loss of earnings (where a young person misses work as a result of providing the service).


Children and young people are not paid for their involvement in activities related to co-production but they can expect to be treated fairly and not be out of pocket for their activities.

  • Travel expenses will be refunded when travelling by public transport
  • Appropriate refreshments will be provided according to time of day and length of meeting
  • Achievements are celebrated appropriately
  • An annual social event is organised as a thank you
  • Certificates and letters of thanks are issued

By being involved in any co-production work, children and young people will see action and change take place, or be informed of the reasons why change does not or cannot take place. They will be able to explain how their views influenced decisions that were made, and be seen at all stages of decision making and commissioning in Wiltshire.

Every six months, a You Said, We did document is produced by the Voice and Influence Team, which explains when and how children and young people have been involved and what the outcome has been. This is circulated to those involved in the work, as well as key officers within the council.


For more information, please contact voiceandinfluenceteam@wiltshire.gov.uk.


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Last updated: 16 April 2019 | Last reviewed: 16 April 2019