Hartlepool students visit Downing Street and swap jobs with Government ministers

From left: Callum Reed, Daniel Measor and Chloe Vickers with Councillor Rob Cook following their Takeover Challenge visit to London.
From left: Callum Reed, Daniel Measor and Chloe Vickers with Councillor Rob Cook following their Takeover Challenge visit to London.

Three members of Hartlepool’s Youth Council enjoyed a “trip of a lifetime” working in the heart of the Government for a day.

Callum Reed and Daniel Measor, both 15, of Manor Academy and 17-year-old Chloe Vickers of Hartlepool College of Further Education spent a whole day working in Government departments as part of the Takeover Challenge.

The national initiative sees students ‘takeover’ the jobs of adults for a day to gain an insight into the world of work.

Callum and Daniel spent part of the day with MPs Ben Gummer and Chris Skidmore who both have ministerial roles in the Cabinet Office in Whitehall.

Callum said: “We talked to the ministers about the devolution deal for the Tees Valley and politics in the North-East.

“In 10 Downing Street we sat in the office where the Cabinet meet. I got a huge amount out of the visit talking to civil servants about routes into employment.”

Daniel added: “The whole day was amazing and the trip of a lifetime. We gave them our views on what we would do to improve education.

“We also had a tour of 10 Downing Street and just missed out on seeing Theresa May, although we did see the tea cup she’d been drinking out of.

“I’ve always been keen on pursuing a career in politics but after the visit it has really inspired me.”

Chloe spent her time in the Wales Office where she joined in meetings learning about the new Parliament bill for Wales and also got to visit the House of Commons and House of Lords.

She said: “The visit was really interesting but it hasn’t changed my mind about pursuing a career in the prison service.”

Hartlepool Mayor Councillor Rob Cook spoke to the youngsters about the experience.

He said: “Clearly, Callum, Daniel and Chloe thoroughly enjoyed their experience in London and they have all been excellent ambassadors for Hartlepool.

“It’s testament to the excellent young people we have in Hartlepool that three young people from our town were invited to spend a day with Government ministers.”

Takeover Challenge is an annual event which sees organisations across England opening their doors to children and young people to take over adult roles.

Many Hartlepool students took part in the day thanks to the numerous employers and organisations in town that backed the initiative.