Milton Rose summer 2014 edition


Ella for Chair of Labour Women’s Network

A while back Ella Vine did some work for us at Southend Labour. I got to know her pretty well. She has moved on (only as far as her home in Thurrock) and is now seeking a prominent role in the Labour Women’s Network.

There are two candidates for the position of Chair. One is from London, the other is Ella.

Ella has sent me this in the hope that some readers of this will vote for her -

See what I am up to, my latest campaigns and policy work:

Elections for the Chair of Labour Women’s Network:

Labour Friends of Poland:

My Company:


Twitter @ElzbietaVine

Charity: Help for Poles in the UK Foundation/ FUNDACJA POMOCY POLAKOM W WIELKIEJ BRYTANII

Company Limited by Guarantee No 8587553

Hitchin and Harpenden

It is tempting to attempt a series on candidates I know. Tempting. I am, though, looking at constituencies just outside of my home county, and Hitchin and Harpenden is not so far from the glories of Essex.

It is a tough seat for Labour candidates, and one of many where Labour slipped into third spot in 2005 after a succession of runners-up spots. I am sure Rachel Burgin will be aiming for top spot (and if the Conservatives can lose in Clacton with its huge majority then who knows what could happen elsewhere).

The results recently (percentages):

2010 2005 2001 1997
Conservative 54.6 49.9 47.3 45.9
Labour 13.6 22.2 32.5 33.1
Liberal Democrat 26.7 25.8 18.0 20.1
UKIP 3.0 1.7 1.3
Green 1.5

So, all Rachel needs to do is see our vote at 1997 levels, and persuade the Liberal Democrats voters to back her – easy!

Go Rachel!

Rachel’s Facebook page is here

Her campaign website is here

Westborough Labour rose – summer 2014 edition


Getting the job done

A road being re-surfaced today

A road being re-surfaced today

Whilst it has not been a perfect start, it has been a pretty good start. I refer to the Joint Administration, whose tenure in charge at Southend-on-Sea Borough Council is about to hit the quarter- year mark – today is day ninety.

It appears to me that as compared to the somewhat turgid last days of the outgoing Conservative administration these ninety days have been characterised by the energy shown. The far-from-perfect Joint Administration, led in many ways by its Labour members, has shown initiative and vim in tackling some quite thorny subjects.

Progress is being made on seeing new social housing being built. Progress is being made in dealing with the eyesore that is Victoria Avenue’s derelict office blocks. Progress is being made with a number reviews of some of the more contentious decisions taken prior to June 5th’s red letter day.

Progress is being made on improving roads and re-surfacing works are in evidence across the borough.

Whilst it remains a challenge in challenging times, taking the town forwards is the goal, and progress has been made in those ninety days. We have been asked by the electorate to make Southend-on-Sea better, and we are getting the job done.

Labour candidate challenges ambulance trust boss

Southend West Labour Parliamentary candidate Julian Ware-Lane has criticised East of England Ambulance trust boss Dr. Anthony Marsh over his recent woeful performance.

The Chief Executive of the East of England Ambulance Service earns £232,000 plus a generous expense package which has seen him spend over £30,000 on hotel and taxi expenses. Under his management the trust has managed to miss most of the government targets set for it. In July the trust did not meet its own Red 1 emergency response target anywhere in the region.

One of the earliest sound bites issued by the Coalition Government was that we “were all in it together”. Never has such a statement sounded so hollow.

The story of the last few years has been of a growing pay divide with some Chief Executives like Dr. Marsh receiving salary bumps well in excess of those who work for them. Their pay rises are well in excess of inflation, whilst those that work for them are lucky to see a 1% rise.

Julian Ware-Lane said “Dr. Marsh is being excessively rewarded by the taxpayer, whilst the service he leads is woefully underperforming. His trust fails to meet many of the Government targets. This cannot be right.”

Change, if you want it

It has been a good week. The last seven days has seen my Southend West campaign starting to move up through the gears. The campaign is now up and running in four wards: Chalkwell, Blenheim Park, Prittlewell and Westborough. That means that there are five to go, and these be picked up in the coming weeks. I am determined to see an active Labour presence in all the nine wards that make up the constituency.

Despite the misgivings of Liberal Democrat activists, Labour will be mounting a vigorous campaign in Southend West. Of course the Lib Dems are nervous, they know that their disastrous marriage to the Conservatives in national government will damage them. I cannot be held responsible for this, and I will be hoping to capitalise on this. At the moment, and to the best of my knowledge, there are only two declared candidates; certainly the Liberal Democrats have yet to select anyone. This does not make their argument any stronger.

This is an alternative to the Conservatives in Southend West, and I represent that alternative.

In the coming months I will be making the case for change in Southend West. This constituency has for too long been a one-party state, a plaything of those who don blue rosettes. This diminishes the accountability of their representative, an MP who is confident of victory regardless as to the lows in his performance.

The Conservatives are better served in many cases by those who choose abstention than those who vote for them. Their 30% vote share in 2010 (in a very friendly political environment) is bested by the 35% who did not vote at all. This should give cause for some optimism, although it is not a given that those who did not vote would be inclined to support my cause. However, my aim is clear – I need to persuade those who are unimpressed by their MP and his Government that change can happen, if only they want it.


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