AN 18-YEAR-OLD student from Oswestry has become one of the country’s youngest councillors – after winning a seat on the town council in the first elections she was eligible to vote in.

Conservative councillor Jess Michie, who turned 18 in January and completed her sixth form studies at the Marches School just last week, was elected to one of three seats representing Cambrian ward in the poll earlier this month.

Driven by a passion for her home town and an appetite for politics, Councillor Michie said she would push for improved youth services and better support for independent traders as the country emerges from the pandemic.

The teenager, who hopes to go to university in September to study politics and Spanish, said she was “shocked but excited” to be elected and pledged to be a strong voice for the town’s young people on the council.

She said: “I feel like young people don’t get involved that often and I thought it was a good idea for me to show that young people can get involved.

“I have lived in Oswestry my whole life, I have seen it through its ups and downs.

“I thought, ‘why sit and complain about stuff that’s happening or not happening, when I can I can be part of the change?'”

Councillor Michie was one of six Conservative candidates to win seats on the town council, with the Green Party taking the remaining 12.

She said: “Oswestry is a market town and I have always been passionate about the fact that it’s a market town.

“The businesses in Oswestry are the reason that it’s the place it is, and I felt that the Conservative party was the best fit for that, they are passionate about supporting businesses.”

Councillor Michie said she also wanted to encourage other young people to take an interest in politics and local government, to ensure their voices are represented in decisions that affect them.

She will attend her first town council meeting on Wednesday evening, and said she was looking forward to getting stuck into her new role.

She said: “For me personally, I want to focus on youth services – it would be great for more young people to have stuff to do.

“And then I think for the next year or so the priority should be on businesses and supporting them to recover from the impact of Coronavirus.”