The Lib Dems work hard for Clacton, our local team in Burrsville came just 42 votes off winning in 2019 and Clacton North Cllr Andy Woods works really hard.
However, we are not always about serious politics, we have lovely fundraising dinners which are really good and family friendly. If you want to come along or come to one of our Lib Dem pints at a local pub, please get in touch by emailing [email protected]
Clacton is a great place, there are few that have a character quite like it. However, it is also a place that has great wealth that goes alongside worryingly high unemployment rates and deprivation.
However, we need to be a community that is resilient, this is why I was brilliantly impressed when I read about this in the news. I have also been privileged to work with the Essex Law Clinic to provide free legal advice in Clacton. But the goodwill of volunteers isn’t enough.
We need large scale investment in our town, for example, we can apply to the European Regional Development Fund to get a project in Clacton like the ones that received millions of pounds in Cornwall, they transformed local communities with jobs programs, new businesses and up-skilled people.
The Economist and former Lib Dem leader, Sir Vince Cable, has written extensively about up-skilling. This is where we don’t just fund university places for young people, but help people gain new skills so they can change careers or adapt to new working environments.
With Clacton, this would be transformative in helping regenerate the community and create jobs for the local area and the people who live here.
Upon the resignation of Councillor Colin Sargeant, there is a by-election in the County Council seat of Clacton East. In this election, 6 candidates are vying for your vote to represent the community at Essex County Council.
The Conservatives are running Councillor Chris Amos, Labour are running Geoff Ely, the Greens are running Chris Southall, Mark Stephenson is running as an independent, KT King is running for the Holland Residents Association.
Finally, I am delighted to have been selected by the local Liberal Democrats to run as our candidate.
From my professional dealings with Essex County Council, I am frustrated at the distance between them and us, we seem to be excluded from decision making. The decisions are being made in Chelmsford, which is 40 miles away and has no clue to the needs and desires of our community.
The Liberal Democrats have always been a party of the community and community politics. Standing up for everyone and ensuring everyone has a voice at every level. I want to bring decision making back to Clacton, because I think local people are best placed to make local decisions.
What we are standing for in this election:
Fight for an accountable children’s services department.
For too long, we have faced cuts to front line services, this means that younger and vulnerable parents lose the initial support they would previously have. Consequently, too many children are ending up in care despite it being avoidable
Fight to ensure our library services are protected
Essex County is trying to save money, one of the ways they are doing this is reducing library costs by handing libraries over to volunteers and hoping for the best. I don’t think that this is good enough. I recognise that we need to transform how we deliver the service, but that cannot come at the cost of a professional service.
Therefore my plan is as follows:
Get the libraries signed up to renewable energy sources (short term investment, long term makes money)
Get every library to have a community cafe where it brings in some vital funds to help meet the cost of running the libraries
Transform the buildings into not just libraries, but community hubs where the community is championed
Fight to get Essex County Council to take our pothole situation seriously
Over 400 people have been killed or seriously injured by potholes in the past ten years, the state of these roads is an accident waiting to happen.