On May 22, people have the chance to choose the councillors who will represent them in 11 of the 33 ward seats up for grabs in the City of Lincoln Council election.
The Echo asked the candidates standing for election in Glebe, Abbey and Park wards, what they most pressing issues are and what they would do for us if elected...
We asked the candidates:
1) What single issue do you think is most important to people in the ward?
2) Why should people vote for you and how would you make a difference?
3) Tell us something interesting about yourself?
Norman Haigh, 72, of Macaulay Drive, Lincoln, is a retired Yarborough High School and St Giles Boys’ School teacher.
1. Any policy that impacts on family budgets at this time is a very big worry, especially for those on the lowest incomes who are bringing up children and are on welfare support schemes.
2. I would oppose any application to build on land designated as flood plain or urban green spaces with proven amenity value. I would support regional government and a return of powers from the county council to the district councils to bring policy making closer to the people.
3. I was a founder member of a credit union for Lincoln and surrounding districts.
David Harding-Price, 57, of Bunkers Hill, Lincoln, is a nurse and is married with two children.
1) The roads are regularly blocked. Even with safety measures, side streets become rat runs and parking for residents becomes a nightmare.
The loss of the roundabout at the Wragby Road, Outer Circle Drive junction has done nothing to improve traffic.
We need to address how pedestrians can cross safely.
2) To make politics local again. By living in the ward I would be representing my own ward. I would look to meet with residents on a regular basis and work with them in improving Glebe ward.
3) I play in a local brass band – City of Lincoln – and have a couple of radio shows.
TRADE UNIONISTS & SOCIALISTS AGAINST CUTS
Keri Lowe, 28, lives in Nettleham Mews, Lincoln, and has four children.
1) On St Giles, one in three children live in poverty.
No matter what the politicians say about us being in a recovery, it doesn’t feel that way on St Giles. If there’s a recovery, where’s our share?
2) TUSC in Lincoln has been fighting for over a year for the Labour-led council to adopt a policy so that no tenant is evicted because they’ve got into rent arrears due to the bedroom tax.
If I’m elected I will walk the walk and not just talk the talk.
3) I’ve got 33 tattoos and six piercings.
Ric Metcalfe, is a lecturer at the University of Lincoln and lives in Waddington. He has two children and two grandchildren.
1) The many families struggling to make ends meet.
The need for more and better paid employment, especially for younger people.
2) I am a very experienced and dedicated councillor who will provide a strong voice on the council.
I have been on the council since 1982 and leader of the council since 1999.
3) I play the jazz trumpet. I love allotment gardening when not doing council work.
Max Smith, 19, trainee builder, Lincoln.
Matthew Wilson, 26, runs Churchills English Restaurant, in Lincoln, lives in Metheringham and has a fiancée.
1) Ensuring that small businesses thrive and prosper so they can provide employment.
2) I would not just sit in meetings but get out there, meet people, hear their views and represent them fully as the voice of all the community.
3) I am a bit of an insomniac who regularly gets by on four or five hours’ sleep, leaving plenty of time to work or occasionally indulge in my hobbies – model making, cooking and DIY.
Chris Butler, 50, married with six grown-up children, is a sales manager who lives in Abbey ward.
Heather Cullen, 33, of High Street, Lincoln, is a care worker who is married with two children.
1) Making sure that the levels of poverty in the area are tackled.
2) I have experience as a city councillor and understand what is required of the role.
I am friendly and approachable and ready to assist the residents of Abbey ward.
3) I have Romany heritage.
TRADE UNIONISTS & SOCIALISTS AGAINST CUTS
Nick Parker, 29, lives in Nettleham Mews, Lincoln. He has one child and three step-children and works in a call centre.
1) The gap between rich and poor. It’s a scandal that in Abbey ward a quarter of children live in poverty, one in ten people are unemployed, and a quarter of households live in fuel poverty.
2) I would provide a socialist voice on the council to oppose all cuts in jobs and services, as well as campaign against increases in charges, rents and council tax.
3) When I was on paternity leave last year, I made sure that my employer counted me as on strike, so I could make the same sacrifice as my colleagues when my union called industrial action.
Christopher Reid, 19, of McInnes Street, Lincoln, is a law student.
1) Decent affordable housing and first-time buyer ownership options desperately need addressing.
2) I will look to find a long-term solution to anti-social behaviour by working with police and residents and seek funding for the Arboretum’s upkeep and for improvements to Monks Abbey Recreation Ground.
3) I take the law clinic at the university and offer free pro-bono advice to the public.
Peter West, 70, of Belmont Street, Lincoln, is retired from the drawing office at Siemens.
1) The relative poverty within parts of the ward – not just solely in terms of employment and wages but also in the provision of housing, much of which is 100 years old and in need of serious update.
2) The big issues cannot be tackled by the council alone and must be done with others. That is why it is important to elect Labour councillors who can give that strong leadership the city requires.
3) I help run the Labour Social Club.
Iain Baker, 33, of Manse Avenue, Lincoln, is a volunteer at Lincoln Sure Start and is married with two children.
1) We need resources for the young to help get them off the streets and out of trouble.
2) I have a long history of helping the community, having been heavily involved with both the children’s centres in the ward. If elected I will work tirelessly on bringing the neighbourhood back.
3) I am a self published author, with a paperback book ‘Invasion Vacation’, and three E-Book short stories.
TRADE UNIONISTS & SOCIALISTS AGAINST CUTS
Gavyn Graham, 46, lives in Tower Flats, Lincoln. He has one child and is a social worker.
2) Making a difference is achieved through mass movements of ordinary people on the streets. If elected, I would be a voice for these movements on the council.
3) I support the movement to reclaim football from the control big business holds.
David Jackson, 73, of Dunlop Street, Lincoln, is a retired chargehand at Alstom and is married and has five grandchildren.
1) There’s a lot of derelict properties that need upgrading.
2) I’m local, accountable and experienced with 35 years on the council. I would continue the programme of urban renewal where the council contacts property owners to get them to do improvements.
3) I once met the famous Australian cricketer Donald Bradman. Lincoln signed a friendship agreement with Port Lincoln in Australia and I went over there. They took me to a test match and I was introduced to him.
Janusz Kala, 56, is a hotel night auditor and lives in St Catherines, Lincoln.
1) Anti-social behaviour and children’s safety.
2) My Polish background and my years as a Lincoln citizen give me a vital link to the whole community.
I am passionate about improving our area for everyone’s benefit.
3) I was employee of the year for one of Britain’s largest hotel chains.
Hannah Smith, 21, is a nursery nurse from Lincoln.
Kenneth Yates, of Queen Street, Lincoln.
1) Pollution from traffic on the High Street.
2) I have plenty of time to take up people’s issues. I would increase public transport and make it easier to cycle.
3) I was the first person in Lincolnshire to join the Green Party when it was known as the Ecology Party.
Zivile Zuokiene, 35, is a Lincoln mum-of-two who works with adults with disabilities.
1) Whether it’s real crime or the fear of crime, people want to see a drop in crime in the area.
2) By working together as one community we can create a safer, healthier, more vibrant city. I believe in old-fashioned, commonsense politics.
I believe I can bring a different perspective to the council as a young person and a mother. I am looking forward to changing the public’s perception of what type of person a councillor is.
3) I am interested in a healthy lifestyle. Good food and exercising is something I believe everyone can do these days with so much information available, not forgetting Park ward has some amazing green spaces.
Nick Smith, chairman of UKIP’s Lincoln and Gainsborough branch, told the Echo that none of UKIP’s candidates for Lincoln could answer our questions due to work commitments.
He wrote in an email: “You can take pictures and info from our website ... can’t do the questions as all our candidates work, not enough time for that.”
The Echo pointed out that we aim to offer fair and equal publicity to every candidate to help voters make informed choices and therefore we have no option but to state
that none of the UKIP candidates was available for comment.
Mr Smith replied: “That will be fine with us.”