Councillor, 18, gets Facebook warning

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Indy Politics

A sixth-former thought to be the youngest elected politician in Britain has been sworn into office with a warning about his use of social networking sites.

Tom Bletsoe, 18, of St Ives, Cambridgeshire, was told that any inappropriate comments on Facebook and Twitter might breach St Ives town council's code of conduct.

Alison Melnyczuk, the council clerk, issued the warning as Mr Bletsoe – an independent who was 18 years and 52 days when he won a by-election this month – officially joined St Ives council by signing a register and collecting an official tie and badge. "I've never given a councillor that warning before," said Ms Melnyczuk. "I did it because Facebook and Twitter are such a big thing now and I thought he should be aware."

Mr Bletsoe said he did not think that the warning was aimed at him because of his youth. "I just think they know that I use Twitter and Facebook a lot," he said.

The councillor, who has yet to vote in a general election, said he had no strong party political opinions but wanted to make a contribution.

"People should not vote for parties. They should vote for people," he said. "If there were a general election tomorrow I would not vote Lib Dem or Conservative or Labour."

Mr Bletsoe, who has ambitions to be an actor or teacher, said he thought politicians who over-claimed expenses had been "greedy" and "ridiculous".

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