Friday 29 April 2016

Striving for a greener Southend

Many times in the last decade I have had significant input into Southend Labour's manifestos. Whilst our manifestos are always a collaborative effort, I can claim to have led the writing of the manifesto in the run-up to several local elections, and this is true of this year too.

This year I have run workshops and crafted draft versions. I am also usually involved in one way or another in the manifesto launch, although this year I was otherwise engaged.

Some time ago  I undertook the task of getting a personal want into the manifesto, a pledge that I believe would improve this wonderful town of ours.  This was my personal desire to see an urban wood of some sort, a new urban wood, established in the borough.

In the manifesto, under "A greener town", is this sentence: "Plant more trees generally and create a new urban wood in the borough."

Should I be successful on Thursday, and should the Joint Administration still hold sway in the council chamber then I will be using my influence to push this idea further along. I am delighted that I have been able to persuade my colleagues in Labour to subscribe to the idea of a new urban wood, but now that I have a commitment in the form of words, I want action.

Southend will be a greener borough under Labour, I can assure everyone of that.

Thursday 28 April 2016

Re-elect me, re-elect someone who has made a difference

A potential for all change in Rochford, and let's hope it happens

Here are the Labour candidates for next week's Rochford District Council elections :-

Downhall & Rawreth - Shaun Cain
Foulness & The Wakerings - David James Michael Lench
Foulness & The Wakerings - Jack Newman
Foulness & The Wakerings - Paul Leslie White
Hawkwell East - Gill Gibson
Hawkwell West - Robert Clemenson
Hockley - Ian James Rooke
Hockley & Ashingdon - Stephen Arthur Willis
Hullbridge - David Frederick Flack
Hullbridge - Robin Hume
Hullbridge - Roger Anthony Neville
Lodge - Bernadette Hannon
Roche North & Rural - Mark Jonathon Daniels
Roche North & Rural - Kevin Douglas Salt
Roche North & Rural - Myra Anne Weir
Roche South - Simon Gosden
Roche South - John Henry Jefferies
Roche South - Victoria Mary Williams
Sweyne Park & Grange - Craig Matthew Archer
Trinity - Stephen James Cooper
Wheatley - Luke Houghton

The number of candidates per party :-

39 Conservative
21 Labour
9 Liberal Democrat
8 Rochford District Residents
4 Green
2 Independent

This is an all-up election for Rochford which has seen new ward boundaries. This means that there could be an end to the Conservative administration - I live in hope.

A few familiar names amongst the candidates include Ann Holland, standing in Foulness & The Wakerings. Ms Holland is Deputy Leader of the Conservative Group on Southend-on-Sea Borough Council. I assume this is an indication that she has finally decided to represent a ward in her home authority and intends to give up her Southchurch seat.

Also standing in Foulness and The Wakerings is Mr Kursaal Green, Simon Cross. Whilst I, of course, hope for Labour victories I wish him well. Southend-on-Sea's political scene will be the poorer for his absence.

I confess to some shock in seeing Angelina Marriott standing in Conservative colours in Hullbridge. I have campaigned with Angelina on many occasions and she never gave me the impression of being likely to switch sides. Hullbridge seems to be the place for disaffected former Labour members.

Wednesday 20 April 2016

The Labour slate in Basildon

Basildon Borough Council has elections on Thursday, May 5th, this year. Here are the candidates I advise all who live in that borough to vote for :-

Billericay East - Patricia Reid
Billericay West - Jack Anthony Ferguson
Burstead - David Thomas Kirkman
Crouch - Sally Jane Muylders
Fryerns - Adele Jane Brown
Laindon Park - Lewis David Blaney
Langdon Hills - Alex James Harrison
Lee Chapel North - Andrew Forrest Gordon
Nethermayne - Graham Peter Herbing
Pitsea North West - Gavin Dominic Callaghan
Pitsea South East - Olukayode Adekunle Adeniran
St Martin's - David Edmund Burton-Sampson
Vange - Kayte Reeta Block
Wickford North - Dolores Maria Baila McGurran

The number of candidates by party standing in Basildon this year :-

14 Labour
14 Conservative
4 Liberal Democrat
3 Green
2 Independent
2 No description

The make-up of the council is currently as follows :-

18 Conservative
9 Labour
3 Independent
2 Independence from the EU
1 Green
1 Liberal Democrat

yadda yadda yadda

This blog is hosted by Blogger and any election related statements are promoted by Julian Ware-Lane on behalf of Labour candidates in Southend, all of 268 Sutton Road, Southend-on-Sea, SS2 5ET.

Monday 18 April 2016

The best team for Southend-on-Sea

The Labour team in the Southend-on-Sea Borough Council elections 2016 is as follows

Belfairs - Dave Alston
Blenheim Park - Matt Dent
Chalkwell - Taylor J. A. Barrall
Eastwood Park - Sean Ryan Jones
Kursaal - Helen Elizabeth McDonald
Leigh - Matt Zarb-Cousin
Milton - Julian Ware-Lane
Prittlewell - Mike Fieldhouse
Shoeburyness - Maggie Kelly
Southchurch - Ros Sanders
St Laurence - Reg Copley
St Luke's - Donna Michelle Richardson
Thorpe - Rod Birks
Victoria - Ian David Gilbert
West Leigh - Ian David Pope
West Shoebury - Joseph Edward Saunders
Westborough - Anne Patricia Jones

Candidates per party :-

17 Labour
17 Conservative
17 Liberal Democrat
17 Green
15 Independent

The Independents are actually standing in thirteen wards - in Shoeburyness and Westborough there are two independent candidates standing. Both these wards have seven candidates for voters to choose from, which makes for an unusually crowded ballot paper.

I expect the Joint Administration to retain enough councillors to be able to stay in charge until 2018 (when the next set of elections are due). In fact, I expect nett  Conservative losses, whilst they may also make the odd gain. I predict that the Labour Group will grow, whilst I think further Liberal Democrat shrinkage is likely as well.

I do not expect wins for either the Greens or UKIP, although their presence could easily affect results. They will take votes from Labour and the Conservative, and it remains to be seen what this will mean in terms of who wins where.

Ian Gilbert for Victoria ward

There is only one sensible choice on the ballot paper this year in Victoria ward. Cllr Ian Gilbert is defending this seat for Labour, defending his record whilst doing so. And what a proud record it is.

Ian leads the Labour Group on the Council, and is Deputy Leader of the Council too. 

His industrty and intelligence are well known. Ian works hard for all in this town centre ward. 

Ian is also a keen campaigner right across the borough, happy to help out comrades wherever help is needed.

Victoria ward is Labour's safest ward in Southend-on-Sea, and this is testament to Ian's hard work, as well as that of his fellow ward councillors, Cllr Margaret Borton and Cllr David Norman.

No vote can or should be taken for granted, but anything other than another term for Ian will be seen as a major upset.

British workers benefit from the EU

Thursday 14 April 2016

Meatless Mondays

There are a number of good reasons why we should be encouraged to reduce our meat intake. This does not mean a full-blown conversion to vegetarianism or veganism, but perhaps having one day a week where meat does not feature in any of our meals.

There are, as I see it, three main reasons why reducing meat consumption is a good thing. Our health, our most precious thing, is the main reason. Studies have shown that a reduced meat intake promotes a healthier life with increased longevity. For instance, heart disease, in many cases,  is linked to the consumption of red meat.

Reducing meat consumption also helps our planet and the environment. Less land is required to produce vegetables than to manage livestock, meaning that precious natural habitats can be preserved. Keeping livestock is also responsible for the production of a significant amount of greenhouse gases.

There is also the issue of animal cruelty. Where possible it is incumbent on humans to treat animals with respect.

Meat Free Monday encourages people to skip meat for one day a week to improve their health and help the planet. I hope to one day see Southend-on-Sea join the likes of Barcelona in promoting the MFM campaign.

St Luke's Voice Winter 2018/19 edition