A TEENAGER has high hopes for his town.
And he wants those in charge to listen to the views of the younger people.
Sam Roper is just 16 but already he is getting involved in the future of Elland.
The Huddersfield student is rallying his town’s residents together to try to get more money spent there.
And he is calling on the council to spend money on projects to engage young people.
Sam, of Lower Edge, goes to Huddersfield New College where he is studying business, economics, law and history.
He said: “I may only be 16 but I can see what needs to be done.
“There is nothing for young people to do.
“In 10 or 20 years time we are going to be really left behind.
“There are great people here and they deserve better.
“There are a lot of community groups here doing their best for Elland and we want the council to help us.
“The council spent about £60,000 asking people in Elland what they want and whether they wanted a train station – it’s common sense to me and the money could be spent on improving Elland and getting the train station instead of asking people about it.
“That money could have been put towards a train station or spent on a park for children to do something or pay towards a facelift for the town.”
Sam, who works part time in a fish and chip shop, added: “There is hope for Elland and I hope the people in charge will work with us and get some money spent here.”
And he has the backing of local councillor Diane Park.
Clr Park said she’d love to meet more young people like Sam.
She said: “The youth are the future of Calderdale and we certainly want to encourage them to get involved.
“It’s difficult sometimes to get them engaged but Sam is very enthusiastic and we’d love to see more like him.
“We’ve got plans for Elland and we’re hopefully getting a grant from English Heritage later in the year so we can get some money spent here.
“I am an optimist, I really want the best for this town, even if I wasn’t a councillor I’d be out doing what I could and Sam is just like that too.
“My advice to young people any everyone is to get involved.
“Some of our parks have been neglected, they need a tidy-up and it’s the residents who get together and get it done.
“If that’s the case I want people to go to the council and make their feelings known and for us all to work together.”
The council’s Youth Parliament has just finished and councillors and officers are looking at what came out of that.