Two teenagers from the North East have been elected into the Youth Parliament to represent the Stockton area.
Jessica Belch from Yarm was elected as Stockton Borough’s MP for the Youth Parliament, with Ciaran Poole from Billingham set to act as her deputy.
Jessica, from Conyers School, received 1174 votes and Ciaran, from Northfield School, was close behind with 1,075 votes.
Over 7,700 pupils from nine schools across the area were invited to vote in the elections which were held in schools for the first time this year.
The election process was run exactly like formal elections for national MPs, with secret ballots and carefully controlled counts.
“I am delighted at being elected a Member of Youth Parliament for Stockton-On- Tees! I am over the moon by the response by young people in the area, especially Conyers! I can't wait to work with Councillor McCoy and Ciaran to secure a good future for Stockton's Young People.
"I am looking forward to delivering my points of views to the House of Commons in London and meeting other MYP's . It is an exciting new prospect and I can't wait to get started!”
“I am really thrilled to be elected Deputy. I thought I was going to come last! One of the things I am most looking forward to doing is visiting the Houses of Parliament and meeting the other Youth MPs. It is really exciting as I have only been to London once before.
"My school and friends around the Borough have really supported me which has been great. I can’t wait to get started.”