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Councillors keep it in the family

PUBLISHED: 08:00 08 January 2010 | UPDATED: 09:05 01 August 2010

IT was a case of keeping it in the family for Bungay Town Council's youngest ever member who has stepped down - to be replaced by her mother.

Tamzin Cloke, who made history when she was elected at the age of 19, has left after two years having been offered a place at Durham University to study a masters degree in history.

IT was a case of keeping it in the family for Bungay Town Council's youngest ever member who has stepped down - to be replaced by her mother.

Tamzin Cloke, who made history when she was elected at the age of 19, has left after two years having been offered a place at Durham University to study a masters degree in history.

And in an unusual twist, her mother, Judy, has now taken her place, making it the first time that a mother has superseded her daughter on the council.

Tamzin said she had been very reluctant to leave the council, but could not pass up the opportunity in Durham.

“My mother keeps sending me copies of the Beccles and Bungay Journal to keep me involved,” she said. “I really did enjoy my time on the council. If I came back to Bungay I'd like to get back on the projects I was involved with before like the skate park and the cyber café.”

Mrs Cloke will see out the end of her daughter's term, which is 18 months.

“She had become so interested in it and was very sorry to leave,” said Mrs Cloke. “She was considering applying to Cambridge to do her masters because she wanted to be involved with the council, but she went to Durham because the course was better. It seemed a shame to let it all drop. She worked so hard.”

Mrs Cloke plans to continue her daughter's work with youth organisations in the town, particularly championing the skate park. Tamzin had forged a strong link between the council and Bungay High School, and Mrs Cloke plans to build on that.

“Both our girls attended Bungay middle and high schools and my husband has been a governor at the latter for many years, so I feel I would be well placed to do this,” she said.

Mrs Cloke will also champion her own causes independent of Tamzin's legacy. “There's a lot to live up to,” she said. “But I'm different so I will do things differently.”

When Tamzin was elected at 19, the council were forced to change the ruling, which stated councillors could not serve below the age of 21.

She had started her studies in politics at the University of East Anglia when she was first elected, and combined her council duties with a part time job at university. Despite the heavy workload Tamzin still managed to gain a first class degree.

John Warnes, mayor of Bungay, said: “We're very sorry that Tamzin's gone, but we're equally delighted that her mother's taken over.”

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