Your candidates - All to play for as borough council elections loom in Redditch - The Redditch Standard

Your candidates - All to play for as borough council elections loom in Redditch

Redditch Editorial 28th Apr, 2024 Updated: 1st May, 2024   0

REDDITCH residents are heading off to the polls on Thursday, May 2, to decide who makes the tough decisions on the borough council.

Polling stations across the borough are open from 7am until 10pm and voters are being asked to have a say on who will represent their area on the local authority.

Every seat on the council up for grabs in the first all-out election since the new ward boundary changes. Previously a third of the council was elected each year with just one in four having no election.

There are now nine wards across the borough with each one being repesented by three councillors (27 seats in total).

After last year’s election, Redditch Borough Council was made up of  16 Conservative and 13 Labour councillors.

The parties standing in next week’s election have been outlining the issues they think most affect the people of Redditch and the policies they have been campaigning on.




Conservatives

Redditch Conservatives said the main issues they had been focusing on were aspiration and education attainment levels, personal safety and environmental improvements

They have pledged to raise the aspiration of the town and, in turn, increase the education levels.


They claim until they achieve this, better jobs for the residents would be harder to achieve.

Coun Matt Dormer said: “We want people to want better, and not settle for ‘it was good enough for me, so it’s good enough for my children’.”

The party wants to reduce anti-social behaviour and tackle the migrating crime issues, alongside creating cleaner streets.

The Conservative group claims it is the best fit for Redditch as it has a track record of achieving government funding and creating upgrades throughout the town.

Conservatives currently control the council and has 26 councillors standing for seats.

Labour

Redditch Labour has pledged a ‘fresh start’ for the town.

Their plans includes not demolishing the library building and striving to keep the it where it is, bringing back a vibrant quality outdoor market and redeveloping the free space in the Town Hall hub.

The main priorities include keeping the town clean and tidy and ensuring affordable housing for everyone which is well-maintained.

And Labour said it would be addressing the cost-of-living crisis, including helping with hikes in mortgages, rent, food and energy bills.

Coun Joe Baker, leader of the Labour Group said: “Your Labour team has been relentless in our goal to ensure that this is a manifesto that can, and will, be delivered.

“We have sought advice and discussed our plan in great detail and I am confident that by working together we will make this manifesto the change Redditch needs to get us back on track and to make your town and community a great place to live and work.”

Green

Redditch Green Party is pushing to elect its first councillor to ‘add that much-needed voice to the council chamber’.

It says it wants to address the critical issues the older parties are not even discussing.

And the party claims its main goals are to improve the environment and protect the parks and green open spaces.

Like other parties, they are pledging to reduce anti-social behaviour and crime, ensuring Redditch is a safe place to live.

A spokesperson for the party said: “We solve problems by listening and working with others.

“We love and will look after our town, we want people here to feel safe and supported by good local services.”

The Greens have 11 candidates standing for seats.

Liberal Democrats

The Liberal Democrats say the main issues they feel are affecting Redditch residents are the cost-of-living crisis and the excessive delays to access NHS services.

The party says it has a clear strategy for easing the pressures on families and growing the economy, including a promise to go after tax avoiders.

Party chair Andy Thompson said the Lib Dems wanted to ensure residents got value for their money from their council tax and councillors will work hard for their communities all year round.

He said: “We don’t play silly party political games – we work with whoever we need to, to get things done.”

 

Independent

Former councillor Juliet Brunner has been persuaded by local residents to stand for the election once more.

Mrs Brunner was a former Conservative councillor and served in Matchborough ward for 19 years and as the Worcestershire County Councillor for Arrow Valley East for nine years.

Speaking on her decision, she said: “I’ve been overwhelmed by the number of Matchborough residents who have asked me to represent them as their councillor that I decided to throw my hat in the ring.

“It is a privilege to serve the community and if elected I would have the added bonus of no party whip, enabling me to truly represent the views of the residents of Matchborough and Woodrow.”

 

THE STANDARD SAYS…….

THURSDAY will potentially see big change for the future of Redditch and its residents when the first all-out election is held.

There are 27 seats up for grabs on the new-look council and you have the chance to make the difference.

We are urging you, whatever your political persuasion, to go out and have your say to truly reflect the public feeling of the borough.

There is no point complaining about council services if you have not helped determine who is in power.

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