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A bit of political mischief from my friend Wally Ashcroft over Billinge councillors
I ENJOYED reading the Star letter over the little bit of naughtiness and mischief from my good friend Wally Ashcroft concerning the councillor replacement in Billinge and Seneley Green due to the resignation of Alison Bacon.
I can assure him and the residents of Billinge that matters are well in hand and there will be an election well before he is eating his Christmas pudding.
As you read we would have chosen our candidate from a shortlist, and on September 25 vote if we have selected more than one.
The decision to wait was purely to get more urgent business sorted especially due to the Tory cuts and the change of leadership.
However, the decision was also made by myself as the branch secretary and those in the ward branch to get the summer holidays over so that everyone comes back refreshed having (then) just fought a successful council election.
To be blunt, everyone, including no doubt our community, would not wish for another election so soon after.
A slight technicality which Wally should have known is that someone should have “called” for an election and to my knowledge they did not, probably for the same reasons I have stated.
We will have a Labour candidate in place by the end of the month and then due process will begin. As to the size of the council and especially the number of councillors in my ward, Wally admits it is the largest and that is why we need three.
If he lived up this end of the ‘outer limits’ of St Helens the parish loyalties of the two areas sometimes make the Saints/Wigan loyalty-divide look like a minor problem something he will not have experienced unless they merged Eccleston and Windle.
Having lived there for 23 years before moving to Billinge I was not aware of such a demarcation (do they talk to each other in Eccleston and Windle?). Seneley Green/Garswood is more than a mile away from Billinge.
As to his argument about the number of councillors – a bandwagon the Greens have jumped upon – that is an issue for those who have charge of the legislation and whether in some large wards two is enough.
If the Tories had total control of St Helens, as is the case in many councils in the south, would he be calling for a reduction? Would he heck!
It is also an issue that crops up on the Star website and have discussed at length. i.e. with a cabinet system and officers making decisions do we need so many but that is another debate?
So thanks Wally for firing the starting gun for the election in this ward which, I presume, there will be a Tory candidate.
See you on the hustings with our candidate.
As Aneuren Bevan once wrote “These Assassins (Tories) once in power are compelled by their very being to keep power”.
I suppose that could apply to all politicians?.
Cllr Bill Bradbury Branch secretary/parish council chairman
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