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Posted on: 20 November 2018


Following her extraordinary experience at the Westminster Abbey MP Remembrance Service, Year 10 Jess Minton returned to London last week to take part in the UK Youth Parliament debate.

The Make Your Mark vote in schools across the country had identified the top 5 topics for debate, and the Youth Parliament considered these and then voted for the top two – Knife Crime and Votes at 16.  Now all Youth MPs will return to their regions to campaign on these topics and try to get change during 2019.

Jess said, “The debate was not what I had expected, as it was very formal and traditional with lots of bowing as the Speaker, John Bercow entered.  We all sat in our regional groups, and the South East group were on the Opposition back benches.  As well as the debate, we learned some amazing historical facts, such as the width of the table with the despatch boxes is two sword lengths so that the opposing MPs couldn’t stab one another during debates!

MPs can wander into the House at any time and are then announced by John Bercow, and everyone applauds.  Dianne Abbott came in first, followed later by Jeremy Corbyn, who received a standing ovation!”

Despite her current involvement, Jess does not have longer term political ambitions.  She wants to work for GCHQ on maths and cryptography, saying, “I find these subjects fascinating – I always preferred Q to James Bond!”