Takeover Challenge

Takeover Challenge 2016

What is the Children's Commissioner's Takeover Challenge? 

Takeover is a fun, hugely successful and exciting engagement project which sees organisations across England opening their doors to children and young people to take over adult roles.

It puts children and young people in decision-making positions and encourages organisations and businesses to hear their views. Children gain an insight into the adult world and organisations benefit from a fresh perspective about their work.


What happened last year

As part of Takeover Challenge 2015 two young people, Mariam and Matthew, took over the role of Children's Commissioner Anne Longfield for a day. They organised and filmed an interview with Anne about her work as part of their new role:


Takeover Challenge 2016 is launching on 18th November 2016!

This year we want to see even more organisations opening their doors to children and young people. 

In 2015 over 44,000 children and young people took part, with more organisations engaging with young people for longer and delivering some excellent ongoing work with young people. This year we want to make the challenge even bigger and have lots of exciting plans to develop the challenge further!

Last year we extended Takeover beyond just one day so more young people and organisations could get involved. The challenge launched on 20 November and we had some amazing Takeovers that enabled long-term engagement with young people.

Who can be part of it? 

Any child or young person and almost any organisation that provides goods or services to them can take part. In previous Takeovers this has included:

  • Parliamentarians and high-profile individuals
  • Public sector organisations, such as local authorities, emergency services and NHS organisations
  • Charities
  • Businesses
  • Schools
  • Museums - to find out more about museum takeovers visit Kids in Museums.


Why take part? 

Children and young people benefit from having fun, being heard, taking part in decision-making and developing new interests and skills. 

Megan Sutcliffe, aged 16, from Leigh, who took part in the Bolton Council Takeover Challenge said:

"It's usually adults who are asked for their views, so I thought it was good that young people were asked what we thought about things. We are the next generation, so I think it's important."

Adults and organisations benefit from gaining a fresh perspective on their work, inspiring children and young people and developing a relationship with their local community.

Tony Hall, Director-General of the BBC, said:

“On Takeover day we’ll be throwing open the doors to the BBC so that some of the youngest members of our audience can come and see what we do. It’s a great chance for children from across the UK to experience lots of areas from Children's to Radio 1 - and even what it's like to be Director-General. Hopefully we can even inspire them to do it for real one day.”


Watch our video of the MPS Commissioner Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe being taken over


Takeover Challenge Gold commendation

Receive a commendation

Our commendation scheme,  Up for the Challenge recognises the ongoing work that organisations do with children and young people for Takeover Challenge. 

It's a merit scheme that recognises and celebrates organisations that run Takeover activities for more than a day, and you  the chance to tell us about what did. We will be running this again in 2016, and would like even more of you to consider applying at the end of your Takeover. We will keep you posted about this year’s scheme.

If you took part in Takeover 2015, It’s not too late to get involved - you can still apply for your award! Entries for 2015 will close on the 31st March.

Apply for your commendation - Takeover Challenge 2015


What should I do next? 

If you are planning a Takeover, please register your interest in taking part, so we can keep you up to date with tips and information to support your activities. It also helps us to know which organisations and individuals want to participate in Takeover!



You can also follow us on Twitter @CCOTakeover and get involved in the discussion using the hashtag #TakeoverChallenge  

If you have any questions, please get in touch at takeover.challenge@childrenscommissioner.gsi.gov.uk.