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History made as Yarmouth teenager elected to Norfolk council

PUBLISHED: 18:29 05 June 2009 | UPDATED: 14:06 03 July 2010

Tom Garrod - Norfolk county councillor

Tom Garrod - Norfolk county councillor

Political history was made in Yarmouth today after 19-year-old cerebral palsy sufferer Tom Garrod was elected to the county council for the Conservative Party.

Political history was made in Yarmouth today after 19-year-old cerebral palsy sufferer Tom Garrod was elected to the county council for the Conservative Party.

Mr Garrod is now the youngest person to ever represent Yarmouth at county hall after he triumphed in the Yarmouth North & Central division over Labour's long serving councillor Michael Taylor.

He gained 1,001 votes compared to Mr Taylor's 856.

The 19-year-old is the nephew of Paul Garrod, the conservative borough councillor and deputy mayor for the town, and he is a member of the Caister independent lifeboat crew.

In emotional scenes his family broke into tears when his name was read out as the election winner and Mr Garrod could not speak for a while as he was overcome with feelings.

Mr Garrod said: “I care passionately about Yarmouth and I will do my bit to promote the town.

“I intend to be a great ambassador for young people on the county council. Young people tend to get a bad press because of ASBOs, but it is great that we will now have that section of the community represented in politics.”

Mr Garrod did not let his cerebral palsy get in the way of his long hours of door knocking and campaigning to drum up support for his party.

His uncle, Paul, who joined him on the campaign trial, said: “I am absolutely over the moon for him.”

Mr Garrod's victory came at the expense of Mr Taylor, 71 and who had served on the council in its various forms for four decades.

Mr Taylor said: “I am so delighted for Tom. I hope he will raise disability issues on the council.”


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