School pupils across Monmouthshire have been busy writing manifestos, debating, and finding out about the workings of democracy as part of UK Parliament Week.

Last week, Catherine Fookes, the Labour parliamentary candidate for Monmouthshire, spent a morning with students from Monmouth Comprehensive School. To Year 12, she spoke about the workings of the Houses of Parliament, the Senedd, and the importance of registering to vote.

Year 13 students presented to her and their classmates their election manifestos and had a chance to vote for their favourite pledges. Anti-discrimination, littering and school improvements were among the subjects close to their hearts.

Ms Fookes, also a county councillor in Monmouth, said: “It was great to hear our young people discussing social issues that they cared about and to talk to them about how they can vote in Welsh elections at 16, in UK elections at 18 but register to vote in UK elections at 16. I was so impressed with the students and it’s great to think that some of them will be speaking up for us in the future.”

Fookes also visited Overmonnow Primary School on Thursday to talk to Years 4, 5 and 6 - they voted for a ban on cutting down trees. She goes on to Chepstow Comprehensive School next week to talk to their Year 12 and 13 students about Parliament and democracy and to host another vote on the things that they care about.