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Youth Debate in Council Chamber, Chaired by Speaker of the House of Commons

Pupils from Chorley's high schools have come together to air their views on the climate emergency during their lively debate in the Council Chamber, at Chorley's Town Hall.

All six Chorley High Schools were invited by the Mayor of Chorley, Councillor Steve Holgate, to bring pupils to the Council Chamber, giving them a platform to voice their views on climate change and an opportunity to experience first-hand democracy in action - Chaired by the Speaker of the House of Commons and MP for Chorley, the Rt. Hon Sir Lindsay Hoyle MP.
The session that took place on 12 November 2021 and was steered entirely by the pupils.

The Mayor of Chorley, Councillor Steve Holgate said: "It has been fascinating to hear the opinions of Chorley's young people on such an important topic and hear them steer the debate with such importance.

"This has been a great opportunity to give pupils the platform to debate, to see where local decision making happens, and for them to be able to summarise their key messages that we can send to COP26 and the government. The pupils will also be able to talk about climate change to their friends and family to encourage them to do their bit too.

"We're always looking to engage with residents of all ages to get their views on climate change and what should be done to help tackle it both globally and at a local level, particularly the next generation who will need to carry on the vital work to tackle climate change."

"I'd like to thank Sir Lindsay Hoyle MP for chairing this event and for inspiring those who attended the event."

20 teenagers from St Michaels C.E High School, Holy Cross Catholic High School, Southlands High School, Parklands Academy, Albany Academy and Bishop Rawstorne Teaching School took part along with Councillor Mark Clifford, Champion for Environment and Green Space, Chief Executive of Chorley Council, Gary Hall and representatives from Inspire Youth Zone, Michelle Graham and Alfie Goodwin

The session took place on the 12 November, the last day of the COP26 Climate Change Conference, which has seen leaders, young activists and climate advocates from around the world raise their voices and commit to action on climate change.

At the end of the session, the views of pupils from each high school were summarised with the aim of these being sent to COP26 representatives and the government.

As part of their programme of climate change activity, Chorley Council has been undertaking a significant amount of work to help tackle climate change, such as a number of initiatives to improve biodiversity such as tree giveaway events and creation of wildflower meadows, development of a Clean Air Strategy, working with social housing providers to make their homes more energy efficient and greener, as well as engagement with local schools and businesses.

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