Students host election debate whilst public hustings will take place tomorrow

Students at Wilmslow High School had the opportunity to hear from and put their questions to the candidates who are standing in next month's General Election.

On Wednesday afternoon the school hosted an educational political debate for 140 students from Year 7 to 12 which was attended by all five candidates standing in the Tatton constituency: Quentin Abel (Independent), Nigel Hennerley (Green Party) Esther McVey (Conservative Party), Sam Rushworth (Labour Party) and Gareth Wilson (Liberal Democrat Party).

A debate for the general public was also planned to take place in the evening, but was postponed as campaigning was put on hold in the wake of Monday's terror attack in Manchester. This has now been rescheduled to take place at Wilmslow Parish Hall tomorrow (Sunday, 28th may) from 6.30pm to 8pm. We understand that all five candidates will be attending.

Year 9 student Joseph Vale said "The debate gave an important insight into the way local and party politics work and gave the students an opportunity to ask questions about issues they care about. The standard of questions was exceptionally high, with questions ranging from matters of the EU to votes for 16 year olds and the issue of the education national funding formula."

The event was chaired by Year 12 student Joe McBride who told "The election debate was certainly interesting. It gave younger students an opportunity to engage in politics, whilst allowing the older students to decide who to lend their vote to! The candidates were able to learn which issues concern the young people of Tatton, including the EU Referendum and its repercussions, education funding and even the economy. It was a pleasure to chair the debate."

Before the debate started a one minute's silence was observed in respect of those who were injured or lost their lives in Manchester.

General Election 2017, Wilmslow High School


Here's what readers have had to say so far. Why not add your thoughts below.

Philip Barton
Saturday 27th May 2017 at 10:17 am
This is an event organised and paid for by the Liberal Democrats. They arranged a time and place to suit them. They were advertising this Thursday to their supporters when no other candidates had agreed to go. The other candidates have had to cancel their own plans to fit this in. Please show your support for your party and don't let the Libdems hijack this Hustings.
Birgitta Hoffmann
Saturday 27th May 2017 at 10:51 am
As a secretary for the LibDems I would like to state categorically that this is not a LibDem event, but is paid for and organised by an independent voter in Wilmslow.

After we heard about his efforts, we abandoned our own attempts to organise separate hustings in Knutsford (which is what Phil Barton is talking about) and feel strongly that this hustings is better for being organised by an independent.

In the interest of full disclosure we did provide him with the following information:
The contact details of the candidates and the contact details for Wilmslow Parish Hall, as he lacked the full information. We also shared our invitation as soon as we got it with and the Knutsford and Wilmslow Guardian, as we felt that as many people as possible should have the opportunity to come.

I personally, look forward to seeing all candidates there.
Stuart Redgard
Saturday 27th May 2017 at 4:48 pm
Having spoken with the independent candidate (Quentin Abel) earlier today, I can also confirm that the event in Wilmslow is NOT a LibDem organised event.

Philip Barton; Will you have the decency to correct your previous comment with an upate?

I understand the venue can seat about 150 people and seating is allocated on a first come first served basis.
Dave Cash
Sunday 28th May 2017 at 2:54 am
Phil Barton, a Cons Party stalwart, should have gone to Specsavers before commenting. (Other Opticians are available locally).
With less than 2 weeks before Election Day time for a joint Hustings is now very limited, so respect for the unknown Benefactor and all Candidates willing to participate.