Here’s to the lady: Obama songsters immortalise Selby’s young mayor

Coun Roise Corrigan is thought to be the youngest female mayor in the country.
Coun Roise Corrigan is thought to be the youngest female mayor in the country.
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Not many 21-year-olds can say they have something in common with Barack Obama - but now Rosie Corrigan can.

After being handed the chains of office as Selby’s youngest ever mayor last week, Coun Corrigan - who is believed to be the UK’s youngest ever female mayor - has been immortalised in song by Irish folk band the Corrigan Brothers.

The band’s ditty for the US president, There’s no one as Irish as Barack Obama, has had more than 10m hits on YouTube since it was released in 2008, and gained the band world wide fame.

Rosie Corrigan is the Youngest Mayor, will be released next Thursday, and speaks - or sings - high praise of the town councillor, who was first elected to Selby Town Council when she was just 18.

Coun Corrigan told The Yorkshire Post she was shocked to discover the song had been written.

She said: “I went into the town council office to do a bit of work and they showed me an email about the song - I couldn’t believe it, it’s really exciting.

“I really liked the Barack Obama song, it’s very funny.”

The song’s three verses remark on how “young Rosie” made her name “wearing the Selby mayoral chain”, and also predict big things for “the pride of Selby”, suggesting she may end up in Number 10.

And the prediction isn’t entirely unlikely for the woman who started her political career campaigning for tuna paninis in the school cafeteria at the age of 12.

The band said of the song: “We are very proud of Rosie Corrigan, it is great to see a Corrigan making such a name for herself.

“We wish her well and hopefully we will get the chance to play the song for Rosie and see if we are related to the Selby Corrigans.”

After becoming elected onto her school council, Coun Corrigan progressed to become a member of Selby District Youth Council, and then on to North Yorkshire Youth Council and the United Kingdom Youth Parliament.

She first stood for election onto Selby Town Council as Labour candidate for the Selby West ward in 2011, after being inspired by a work placement with former Selby MP John Grogan.

Last year, she was voted deputy mayor and was sworn in last Monday as mayor.

She is currently spending a year working in Westminster for Shadow Health Secretary Andy Burnham, as part of her degree in British Politics and Legislative Studies at Hull University.

Coun Corrigan said: “I’m really honoured to have been given this position. It’s a big responsibilty and I’m looking forward to the year ahead.”

That will be spent on official engagements like opening the local beer festival, representing the town council at the Remembrance Service and switching on the Christmas lights.

But it’s not all positive, she said she’s “developed a thick skin” to put up with “keyboard warriors” who have sent her “unpleasant” messages.

But it won’t put her off. She won’t be risen on whether her goal, like the song suggests, is Number Ten, but for now she’s happy to work for her constituents.

She said: “There’s so much more that the town council do than people realise, from looking after the graveyards and market to the allotments.

“This year I’m hoping to connect with children and young people, that’s my big focus, to encourage them to be active in their communities.

“A lot of politicians don’t necessarily listen to children but take a lot of decisions that affect them.”

The Corrigan Brothers have charted across the world and gained international fame with their tribute to US president Barack Obama and his Irish roots.

Rosie Corrigan is the Youngest Mayor remarks on Coun Corrigan’s rise to Selby Town Council, her boyfriend - a Tory councillor - and even speaks of the things to come.

The final verse reads:

So here’s to the lady

The youngest girl Mayor

The pride of Selby

Such political falir

So watch this space

For the day when

Rosie is moving in

To Number Ten