Crawley Observer Column, Wednesday 1st May 2019

This Thursday is Election Day. By now you’re probably aware there have been boundary changes in Crawley, meaning every seat on the borough council is up for election and as a result you’ll have two or three votes you can cast, depending upon the number of councillors representing your area.

On the day you will be able to vote from 7am to 10pm, you won’t need your polling card to vote and if you have a postal vote you haven’t posted it can still be handed in at any Crawley polling station. Every year in Crawley we have seats which are won by less than 50 votes, at the 2005 General Election even the constituency came down to 37 votes, and when the Conservatives took control of Crawley in 2006 it was on the draw of lots as a seat was tied. In Crawley, your vote can always make the difference.

While Conservative-run West Sussex County Council is responsible for road maintenance and parking, schools, and adult social care and our Conservative Police Commissioner is responsible for preventing crime and antisocial behaviour, Labour-run Crawley Borough Council is responsible for delivering facilities like K2 and the Hawth, building new affordable housing, and maintaining services like the weekly bin collection.

What happens to these services and facilities is the question at this election. Do we want a council which will continue working to maintain and improve these services and facilities, which prioritises the things residents ask for and is building affordable homes for local people on a scale not seen in decades, or do we go back to the same programme of cuts we saw when the Conservatives last ran Crawley.

While Crawley Labour’s manifesto has been produced following careful consultation with the public and council officers to ensure we are not only committing to the things residents want but which can actually be delivered, the Conservatives’ ‘Plan’ for Crawley appears to be unfunded and the only thought on ‘delivery’ seems to be delivering more votes, rather than the things they are promising. Voters have seen this before and I’m sure they know what to do.

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