Campaigning: Localism & Young People

Localism at 14 Pamphlet


What is the Localism Bill?

The Localism Bill seeks to shift power from central government back into the hands of individuals, communities and councils. One of the major parts of the bill focuses on planning and neighbourhood design. Neighbourhood forums and referenda form the backbone of community planning legislation in the Bill and will dictate the design of neighbourhoods and community spaces of the future.

Why are we campaigning?

Young people have a major stake in the future of their local urban spaces, yet, on the whole, find it difficult to engage meaningfully with local decision makers around planning and the built environment. Young people have a vital contribution to make, and without their support local design and planning decisions do not represent the views of all sections of the community.

What are we asking for?

We are campaigning for young people to have the right to vote in neighbourhood referenda on planning from the age of 14.

We are campaigning to ensure neighbourhood forums are inclusive, not exclusive

We are asking Local Authorties and neighbourhood forums (especially the vanguards) to sign up to a charter of principals that will help them to ensure equal access and participation for all groups living and working locally

Why should you support us?

Young people have an impact on the city and the city has an impact on them. By including them in the process our neighbourhood designs will be stronger, more dynamic and innovative and ultimately create more liveable communities. Young people have a great deal of useful local knowledge and experience which should be used to make better places for everyone.

How can you support us?

Please download the My City Too ambassadors pamphlet (AVAILABLE SHORTLY) to read and distribute to other practioners. Please let us know of your support by emailing us at

What do young people and our say?

"When it comes to what is happening in their own community, children as young as 14 not only have a real understanding of that, but are also participating in what is going on and have a real interest in the things a community might be doing to improve itself. We should look for ways of involving them." Lord Lucas, Conservative Peer, 2011

“We get the vote at 18 but until then we’re not asked about things which affect us directly like the state of our local neighbourhood – which we spend most of our time in. Councillors and planners don’t ask us for our input. We think they should and if we had the vote they would,” said Robert Newcombe, a My City Too! Ambassador.