John Knight's May 2018 Talking Politics Column for Macclesfield Express

24 May 2019

In this month’s Cheshire East Council elections, Green candidates in Macclesfield and Poynton received 4580 votes, for which we thank you.  That’s 4580 votes for lower speed limits in our towns and villages, to reduce the level of emissions and the harm caused by accidents.  4580 votes for safer cycling, so we don’t have to feel we’re taking our lives in our hands when we leave the car at home and use the bicycle instead.  4580 votes for improved recycling facilities, so that flat-dwellers have the opportunity to recycle their rubbish, rather than putting it all down the chute to go to landfill.  4580 votes for the council to work with landlords to allow tenants to benefit from renewable energy.

Although no Greens were elected here this time, the Green Party is now firmly established as the main challenger in Macclesfield Central, Poynton West & Adlington and Sutton & Rainow, as well as a number of other wards elsewhere in Cheshire East.  We congratulate all those successfully elected to Cheshire East, as well as town and parish councils, while giving them notice that we will be scrutinising their performance, holding them to account for the manner in which they represent residents.

Some Labour councillors have stated that they will fight to save our Green Belt from inappropriate development (although, regrettably, some Labour candidates gave their support to major road-building through swathes of Poynton and Adlington greenbelt).  We urge our new council to call a halt to building on green spaces, while proper consideration is given to how many new shops and houses we really need and where they should be.  We call for the proposed development of the so-called “South Macclesfield Development Area” - northern Danes Moss, a haven for wildlife, including willow-warblers, chiffchaffs, song thrushes and wildflowers - to be scrapped.