I have been the Labour Party candidate for Blenheim Park ward for a while now. When I was selected, a number of people told me that it was hopeless, it was unwinnable, it couldn’t be done.
Now, we’re all about to find out whether they were right. Yep, you read that right. I don’t know how it’s going to pan out, and neither does anyone else. But it’s in your hands, the voters of Blenheim Park ward.
I have knocked on a lot of doors, and spoken to a lot of people. Not nearly as many as I would have liked to, but from those I have talked to there is no love for the current crop of councillors representing them. Very few could name any of their councillors, and with those who could it was mostly Lib Dem and part-of-the-furniture Graham Longley.
There has been widespread distaste for the coalition government too. Many times in the last few weeks I’ve had my hand warmly clasped, and some variation of the words, “We have to get the Tories out!” uttered.
So why am I standing? I believe that Blenheim Park can be better. And I believe that that starts with good, solid, in touch representation. There’s a reason I’ve been slowly crawling around the ward, talking to as many people as I can. If I’m elected, I’ll keep doing so, until I’ve spoken to every resident. And then I’ll start again.
Because I think that that link between councillor and resident is the cornerstone of a thriving community, which people want to live and work in, which people want to be part of, which works for everyone. I want Blenheim Park residents to know my name, not out of some sort of vanity, but because I want them to know who they can come to with problems and in time of crisis.
So if elected as your councillor, I will do everything I can to maintain that link of contact. I’m not going to make brash promises of regular e-newsletters, because I don’t think I need to. I will keep do what I’m doing: blogging and tweeting, and knocking on doors.
And as far as my politics go, I wear them on my sleeve. I am a Labour Party member. I am a socialist. I believe we as a society only do as well as the least amongst us, and that whatever we do, fairness needs to be at the core of it. I want to protect the services that people rely on, and to make sure we provide for everyone.
So there you go. That’s why I think you should vote for me. If you like the sound of that, then go and put your cross next my name on the ballot paper. If you don’t, then choose one of the other candidates. It really is as simple as that.
Thank you for an inspiring campaign, Blenheim Park. I look forward to the election results, and whatever will follow.