THE St Helens Labour group has vowed to offer a "credible, deliverable, and ambitious plan" to help the borough's recovery after the coronavirus pandemic ahead of the upcoming local elections.

The party has released its manifesto for the St Helens Council elections to be held in May as the party seeks to consolidate its grip on power at the town hall.

Labour currently has 34 of the 46 currently occupied seats, with 17 to be contested across the 16 wards of the borough on May 6.

Currently two seats on the council are vacant – one in the Windle ward and also one in Earlestown, which will see two councillors elected next week.

Labour says the document sets out its plans for St Helens as work ramps up to help residents, businesses and essential services not just to recover from the pandemic but to "build back better".

Labour says its record during the pandemic in St Helens has included working with partners to support residents and creating #StHelensTogether; helping businesses; supporting schools and working with the local NHS and partners to aid Covid testing and the vaccination centre.

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Labour says it has developed an Economic Recovery Plan with businesses and other partners, producing a detailed Borough Strategy designed after the biggest consultation the council has undertaken in years, which it says spells out priorities for St Helens.

The party added it is committing to investment of more than £100m in projects including repairing the Gamble Building and Earlestown Town Hall, rebuilding schools, and improving leisure facilities.

In the manifesto Labour has vowed to publish masterplans for redevelopment in the borough's town centres later this year; protect parks and fully implement a new Climate Action Plan to reach net zero carbon emissions as a borough by 2040.

The party says it will review the waste and recycling service for residents; tackle antisocial behaviour, pursuing and prosecuting flytipping and investing in improved CCTV and work with community groups and partners to for children to receive meals during school holidays.

David Baines, leader of St Helens Borough Council, said: “This election is our chance to choose how we rebuild after Covid. Our manifesto clearly shows Labour are determined to stand up for St Helens residents, businesses and essential services who have fought so hard in the past year and we’re the only party with a credible, deliverable, and ambitious plan for the borough.

"Use all your votes for Labour in these elections to help make sure we can continue to work together for St Helens and build the society and economy we need after the pandemic.”