Tuesday, 11 December 2018

Pupils question politicians

STUDENTS at the Piggott School in Wargrave quizzed politicians at an election hustings on Friday.

STUDENTS at the Piggott School in Wargrave quizzed politicians at an election hustings on Friday.

The five Parliamentary candidates for the Maidenhead constituency, including incumbent and Home Secretary Theresa May, of the Conservatives, sat as a panel.

The others were Charles Smith for Labour, Tony Hill (Liberal Democrats), Herbert Crossman (UKIP) and Ian Taplin (Independent). Sixth- formers were given the chance to ask questions of the panel, with topics including youth unemployment, housing, food banks and a third Thames crossing.

Each candidate was given three minutes for an opening speech and 90 seconds to answer each question.

The debate was hosted by 18-year-old students Jemma Savage and Luke Appleton, who twice had to stop Mr Crossman mid-sentence after he overran. After the debate, the candidates were invited to the sixth-form centre, where the students were able ask more questions.



Mrs May said: “It was an excellent debate. The students came up with some really good questions and it was very well run by Luke and Jemma.

“It’s hugely important that young people get involved with politics. They will be voters one day — some already are — and it’s important to get engaged with politics as soon as possible because it will affect their future.”

Mr Taplin called the event “brilliant”, adding: “It’s what politics is all about. The future of the country is in these people’s hands.”

Before the debate, three students representing the different parties met the candidates. They were Will O’Hara (Con), 16, Ben Smith, (Lab), Matthew Laverty, (Lib-Dem), both 17, and Ismaeel Khalid and Jamie Ross (in support of abstaining), both 17.



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