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Conservative Party Conference – what’s youth got to do with it?
On the second of October, I went to the Conservative party conference in Manchester with quite a few other members of the cabinet. We were attending the ‘What’s youth got to do with it?’ event at the town hall. As we got to the entrance, we could see the protestors dancing and singing outside. When we got inside, we were surrounded by a lot of young people, some who I recognised from Youthforia/UK Youth Parliament. Then, all of a sudden, I realised I was sat in front of Tim Loughton who was speaking to the cabinet. He was asking us where we were from. Then he spoke to me and asked if we were part of any youth organisations and I replied ‘Yes, Trafford Youth cabinet and UKYP’ It was a pleasure speaking to Tim before the debate. As the panel got ready, we could still hear the protestors outside jeering. The panel consisted of Tim Loughton, Children’s Minister, Ben Howlett from Conservative Future, Danny Barton from O2 Think Big, Josh Payne from Oldham Youth Council and the Chair of the British Youth Council. The debate was really interesting and at one point, a girl from Manchester pointed out that if a young person is a criminal for stealing two bottles of water, what does that make of the MP who fiddled with her expenses of £47000. The debate proved to be quite controversial yet fun at the same time. I am honoured to have attended this conference, and I hope more young people attend next year. When the debate ended, we were given a chance to speak to Tim Loughton himself and participate in an interview, but sadly we had to go home. Shereen Patel.