Friday, 7 July 2017

Our response to the planned Canterbury West Station multi-story car park

Go to Campaigns to see the Canterbury District Green Party response to the consultation on the plans for a multi-storey car park on Station Road West

Thursday, 18 May 2017

Help your local Greens by donating to our crowdfunder

To help fund our General Election campaign and the fight to win a Westgate ward seat in the by-election, also on 8th June, we need your help. The KCC elections left us low on finances, so please be as generous as you can. Many thanks. Here's the link:

http://www.crowdfunder.co.uk/help-us-campaign-for-a-green-mp-in-canterbury

Friday, 12 May 2017

General Election hustings



Our parliamentary candidate, Henry Stanton, with 
Deputy Leader of the Green Party, Amelia Womack.

There will be three hustings events for the General Election in our constituency. Our Green Party candidate, Henry Stanton, will be grateful for your support at these, so do come along if you possibly can.

Thursday, 18th May, 7.30pm-9pm at Whitstable Umbrella Community Support Centre,
St Mary's Hall, Oxford Street, Whitstable, CT5 1DD (arranged by the East Kent European Movement) - especially focussed on Brexit but also covering other current issues. 

The hustings are free to attend, but you will need a ticket. There are none left, but contact Pat Marsh if you'd like one of the four spare ones she has: canterburygpsecretary@gmail.com
Doors open at 7pm, with teas and coffees, with the event starting at 7.30pm finishing for 9pm.

Friday, 26th May, 6.30pm-8pm, Old Sessions House, Canterbury Christ Church University (arranged by Christ Church's Politics Matter and The Canterbury Society)

Wednesday, 31st May, 7pm, Gulbenkian Theatre, University of Kent (arranged by Centre for Health Services Studies) - questions on public health policies

NB The hustings on 17th May at the University of Kent has been cancelled.

To see the Green Party's General Election priorities, go to https://www.greenparty.org.uk/election-priorities.html

County council election results


The Green Party was the only nationwide opposition party with an increase in its number of seats in the 2017 local elections.

In our District there was a 25% increase in our vote from 8% to 10% in Canterbury City North, which was considered good in the current political climate. The Lib Dems did well: their vote was up from 8% to 24%, while Labour’s results were down by vote share, as were the Conservatives, from 43% to 36%, although they won 67 seats out of the 81 (Lib Dems 6, Labour 5 and Greens 1 – Martin Whybrow in Hythe retained his seat). Overall, though, the Lib Dem share across the county was not spectacular, nor was it across the country.
However, the local Lib Dems were guilty of underhand actions. Some voters in Canterbury City North and South received personally addressed letters on the eve of polling day, apparently aware of their intention to vote Green or Labour, urging them to vote Lib Dem instead as the only real opposition to the Tories.
Judging by the KCC election results, a large number of these voters appear to have fallen for the Lib Dems’ overtures. This was particularly galling in Canterbury City North, where loyal Green supporters spent many hours of their free time winning over voters on the doorstep with never a yellow rosette in sight. When it came to the election, the Lib Dems failed to win the seat in that division, having had little chance of doing so despite their claims, and yet they increased their vote substantially.
Canterbury District Green Party offered the Lib Dems a pact for the May elections last December, precisely in order to defeat the Tories in Canterbury. The idea was rejected without so much as a meeting to discuss it.
local Lib Dems should, however, reflect that their dirty tricks might not work on the electorate again. For those wanting to vote tactically in the General Election in June to defeat our Tory MP but without the time to research the 2015 results, it may be useful to know that the Lib Dems received just 11% of the vote.

The only chance we have of returning a non-Tory Canterbury MP to Westminster is to form a progressive alliance to stand one single candidate to represent the three local parties. As this proposal from the Greens has been rejected by both the Lib Dems and Labour, the only choice local progressives have is to vote for the party which most closely represents what they believe in and to build up that party’s strength to stand up for those beliefs in the future.

Saturday, 18 March 2017

Turn Your Key for Canterbury


On Saturday 11th March Green Party members spent the afternoon approaching all vehicles waiting at the St Dunstan's level crossing when the gates were down to ask them to turn off their engines. They distributed flyers giving some facts and figures about air pollution in Canterbury and gave stickers for car back windows to those drivers who requested them to alert other drivers to switch off their engines when stationary.

The vast majority of drivers were friendly and receptive to the message: Turn your key for Canterbury.

Greens will be having similar Action Days this year to raise awareness that levels of air pollution in our city often exceed those permitted.

Thursday, 29 September 2016

Get-together in Canterbury for new members and old



Canterbury District Green Party members got together on Wednesday evening, 28th September, for a get-together with new members.

Henry Stanton, our Election Agent and lead candidate for next year's County Council elections, gave an informative presentation about our local party and how we are applying the Green Party's Target To Win strategy. He also pointed out key issues in the District.

Nathan Tough, our Campaigns Manager, talked about why he joined the Party and what he hopes we can achieve locally.

Members then had the chance to socialise over some homemade hummus, biscuits and chocolate cake from long-standing member, Marilyn Sansom.


Monday, 18 July 2016

Buses for people, not profit - scrap Clause 21 of the Bus Services Bill

Clause 21 is part of the Bus Services Bill 2016. The Bill is currently going through the House of Lords and is, for the most part, very good. 

The Bus Services Bill would allow local authorities to: 

· set maximum bus fares 

· introduce joint tickets and travel zones, so you could use one company’s tickets on another’s bus – particularly useful if you’ve got a return ticket or need to change buses during a journey 

· introduce Oyster-style cards 

· set timetables and routes 

That’s all good stuff which we’d definitely support, especially given the state of bus services in much of Canterbury District. 

But there’s a fly in the ointment. 

Clause 21 

One of the most effective ways to do all of the above is for local authorities to run their own bus companies. Several have done this, returning millions of pounds back to public funds which would otherwise have gone to shareholders. 

Unfortunately, Clause 21 of the Bus Services Bill would specifically prevent them from doing that. Here’s the text of that Clause: 

21 Bus companies: limitation of powers of authorities in England 

(1) A relevant authority may not, in exercise of any of its powers, form a company for the purpose of providing a local service. 

This is a truly bizarre clause to slip in there, particularly given that: 

· public ownership of buses could save £506 million each year; 

· private bus companies outside London make profits of between 6% – 18% per year; 

· an average of £277 million a year goes to shareholders instead of services; 

· 40% of revenue to those companies comes from local authorities and national government (ie the taxpayer). 

There are currently 12 publicly owned bus operators. Among them are Lothians, which returned £5.5 million to the public in 2014, and Reading, which returned £3.3 million. 

What can you do? 

Clause 21 makes no sense whatsoever but it’s not too late to stop it becoming part of the Bus Services Bill. 

The Bill is currently with the House of Lords, with the next Committee Stage this Wednesday, 20th July. 

Petition 

The We Own It petition is online here: We want buses for people not profit

Please sign and share it. 

Write to a Lord 

You can write directly to Lord Ahmed of Wimbledon, who sponsored the Bill: ahmadt@parliament.uk

You can also email other Members of the House of Lords through Write to Them. This is a list of Lords who have mentioned Public Transport the most: http://efgp.org.uk/wttlordspubtran

The top few are a good place to start. 

The House of Lords has been surprisingly good recently so they might well remove Clause 21. However, if they don’t, we can still lobby for its removal when the Bill gets back to the House of Commons. 

In the meantime, please sign the petition, write to a Lord or two and share this page to spread the word! This is one of many issues which people aren’t generally aware of and, when they’re made aware of it, are flabbergasted by. 

Further information 

Most of the facts and figures in this post are from the We Own It website: Why buses would be better in public ownership

There are a lot of useful documents on the government website: Bus Services Bill: Overview