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Frome College Parliamentary debate hosted by Mariella Frostrup

Mariella Frostrup

Mariella Frostrup – photo courtesy  of ‘Chris Bailey Photography’

Frome College hosted a full house at the lively Parliamentary Debate chaired by TV presenter Mariella Frostrup in the campus 240 seat Merlin Theatre.  

All five of the constituency’s declared Parliamentary Candidates accepted an invitation to take part before the General Election in May to discuss topics and answer questions.

Post 16 students and guests attended to hear David Warburton (Conservative), Theo Simon (Green Party), David Rendel (Liberal Democrat), David Oakenson (Labour) and Alan Dimmick (UKIP) battle it out for their much needed support being eligible to vote.

With David Heath MP stepping down this year, all the candidates are hoping to secure the seat in Parliament.

Mariella opened the debate and ensured the candidates stuck to their allotted time slots to ‘sell themselves’ to the audience and answer direct questions about key issues and what changes their party intends to make over the next five years.

In the last national election 56% of 18-25 year olds did not vote. Less than 100 ago, over 50% of the population were not entitled to vote.  Across the world, many people are denied the vote as a result of being men, women, in poverty, disabled or the wrong colour or race.  At Frome College the belief is  in supporting those people who worked so hard to enable everyone over 18 to have a vote.

Assistant Principal Lisa Millard remarked, “It is vitally important that our first time voters understand politics, which is why we organised this event. We want them to be informed, confident and proud to have a voice. We are grateful for the support of the candidates, the students, Mariella and everyone who helped in making this important event so successful.”

College Principal, Mr Ball thanked everyone for attending the event and highlighted the importance of voting to ensure a fair democratic process.

As a testament to the success of this event, the Year 12 and Year 13 students are hoping to invite the candidates in for an informal discussion and to have more of their questions answered to ensure they are well informed about each party’s policies.

There will be another debate held at the Cheese and Grain on Democracy Day, Sunday 12th April from 4.15pm.  Parents and students are invited to attend.