Nathan, 18, hopes to win council seat in Ipswich for Tories
- Credit: CHARLOTTE BOND
An Ipswich teenager is hoping to become one of the youngest councillors in the country when he stands for the Conservatives in May's Suffolk County Council election.
But Nathan Wilson, who was 18 in August, has an uphill task - he is contesting the Chantry division which elected two Labour councillors in 2017.
However the division is considered marginal - and he is standing alongside experienced Ipswich councillor Nadia Cenci. The pair are hoping to take both seats in the May 6 election.
Nathan, who has also been nominated as a community hero for his voluntary work during the Covid pandemic, said he has been interested in politics since he followed the referendum campaign in 2016.
His family is not particularly political - and he joined the Conservatives because he shares the party's view on personal liberty.
He said: "While there should always be a safety net from the state, people should essentially be left to get on with their lives how they want to life. That is why I joined the Conservatives and I'm really looking forward to the election."
Nathan is a first year student at the University of Suffolk and lives with his family at Sproughton - but he lived in the Chantry area as a youngster so knows the area well.
He said: "This is my home area so I really want to get the chance to represent it on the council."
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Anyone old enough to vote can stand for the council - but many younger people find it difficult to juggle council work with full-time employment or studies.
Ipswich council opposition leader Ian Fisher was delighted his party had attracted a young candidate to fight a winnable seat. He said: "It's excellent that someone of his age wants to put themselves forward and as he is standing with an experienced Councillor (Ms Cenci) it would hopefully reassure the electorate that we have a good blend of experience and youth!"
Nominations for the seat have not formally opened yet - but sitting Labour councillors Peter Gardiner and Helen Armitage are preparing to defend the two seats in the division in the election on May 6.