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A YOUNG election candidate is hoping to become the second 19-year-old elected to Gosport Borough Council.

Craig Hazel is hoping to snatch a seat in Elson at the local elections on May 3 for the Conservatives.

If successful, Mr Hazel, of Eastbourne Avenue, will be the second 19-year-old Tory to win a seat on the council.

He said: ‘I have spoken to a few people who find it unusual that I’m so young and interested in politics.

‘But my age is a benefit.

‘I have lived in the area all my life and I would like to help improve Elson.

‘I also feel the Conservatives are the ones who are trying to make a change within the area.’

Mr Hazel works part-time at Waitrose in Stoke Road, and has recently completed an apprenticeship and other studies at Fareham College.

He has previously served on both Hampshire and Gosport’s youth councils.

One of Gosport’s Bridgemary South councillors, Cllr Chris Carter, was elected in May 2010 at the age of 19.

At the time he was the youngest ever Gosport councillor. Mr Hazel will take on Labour candidate Jess Cully and Lib Dem candidate George Heaver.

Mr Cully, 40, of Dolphin Crescent, said: ‘I believe we need more Labour councillors in Gosport to bring a fresh input to the council.

‘I also want to restore some dignity to politics.’

Mr Heaver, 64, of Naish Drive, Elson, said: ‘I have lived in my area for four years and have an interest in the surrounding countryside and keeping it clean.

‘If I can bring a little bit more litter picking, I will try and keep the area clean. I’m not a political animal but interested in where I live.’