Worksop councillor calls for more young people to get involved in politics

Being a councillor isn’t the easiest job when you’re in your twenties – and some more youthful local politicians in Nottinghamshire even say other young people just think they’re ‘weird’.
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Figures show council chambers across the country are currently dominated by older members.

The average age of English councillors in 2022 was 60 years old, according to a census by the Local Government Association – and just 16 per cent were under 45.

Some young Nottinghamshire councillors have faced questions about their age from constituents, and sometimes struggle to balance their duties with other commitments.

Coun Callum Bailey says there's more to being a councillor than just party politics. Photo: OtherCoun Callum Bailey says there's more to being a councillor than just party politics. Photo: Other
Coun Callum Bailey says there's more to being a councillor than just party politics. Photo: Other

But all say the participation of young people was vital for local democracy.

Coun Callum Bailey (Con) was elected to the Worksop North seat on Nottinghamshire Council six days before his 23rd birthday in 2021.

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He now sits on the health scrutiny and adult social care and public health select committees at County Hall.

He said: “People my age are often focusing on getting on the career ladder – it’s tough to balance that.

"You have to find the time because you value what you’re doing.

“You see your friends going out while you’re sat in a parish council meeting.

“Sometimes you can be in the pub on a Friday night and get a call from a resident which you have to deal with straight away.

"Other young people can think it’s weird.”

However, he agrees that more young people should get into politics.

He said: “You can get a feel (of the local mood) at your town or parish council, which can be a couple of hours a month.

"There are other options besides party politics.”