Author Archives: Heather Kidd

The Liberal Democrats are the party of rural communities

For as long as I can remember, the mantra has been that the Conservative Party is the party of the countryside. My question is, why? Have they done anything for rural areas or have they simply taken them for granted?

It is time that we who live and work here in our communities and understand far more about rural issues than our opposition, took on that role. This year, on 2 May 2019, the public in many areas gave us their confidence and elected around 704 new councillors, many of them in rural and coastal areas. We are now in control in 49 councils either alone or in partnership. A clear majority of these are rural or coastal or both.

Now is the time to share best practice and strengthen our policy for rural delivery.

Rural and coastal communities are individual and have characters of their own. How do the Liberal Democrats work with that and make it work?

Campaigning needs to be the same but different to that in urban areas. Liberal Democrats are far better at working on the ground than other parties but in rural areas it’s remembered and valued by constituents.

Knocking on doors across a rural area will pay dividends if you do it year in and year out. Meeting people in the back of beyond where the opposition rarely go, stays with those residents and many repay the work. Knocking on the doors of new residents on the electoral roll is also a winning step.

Regular newsletters touching the whole of the electoral area keep residents abreast of local issues. Your work is of course important in both rural and urban areas, but in many rural areas, residents frequently cannot get that local information easily and you are providing a real service in doing that.

Posted in News | Tagged , , and | 4 Comments

‘Don’t let the SpArC go out’ campaign reaches another level

Sparc 1

Little did I know that the press release I put out on August 8th would hit national TV. The following day our funding crisis at SpArC – the Bishops Castle Leisure Centre in south west Shropshire –was front page of the Shropshire Star. Most of the County has been given a year’s reprieve to try to find revenue funding for their Leisure Centres. Not so for four centres in the South of the County. We face an extra 25% cut and a cut of £65,000 in education funding  for SpArC alone.

The community are rallying. We are fundraising to raise £50k to insulate the pool, the building and reduce energy costs and usage. We have raised over £36k already. The cuts for us this year were a kick in the teeth.

Last week I was minding my own business delivering leaflets (for our by-election) at the base of the Longmynd with my colleague Cllr Nigel Hartin from Clun (who had just been bitten by a farm dog) when my mobile rang – a novelty in itself with our poor mobile signal –  Channel 4 News wanted to come and film. Could I get parents and children there? Was this possible? It is August. Teme Leisure who run the Centre pulled out all the stops and parents and children poured in. We managed it together.

Posted in News | 2 Comments
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