Six months of campaigning bear fruit for Labour’s Suzy Stride in street-light campaign
Politics / Fri 16th Jan 2015 pm31 04:44pm
AFTER months of campaigning and more than 2000 signatures on a petition, Labour’s Parliamentary candidate for Harlow Suzy Stride has proclaimed victory in the fight to switch the streetlights back on in Harlow.
Labour controlled Harlow Council will unveil a plan to pay Tory Essex County Council to turn the streetlights back on, when they announce their budget proposals next week. The plan has come after months of intense lobbying from Labour figures led by Suzy Stride.
Streetlights in Harlow were turned off in some streets in early 2014 by Conservative controlled Essex County Council in a cost saving measure. The switch off necessitated a new management system for the lighting which it later emerged cost more than £8m, meaning no saving will be made by the switch off for years to come.
Suzy Stride started an online and paper copy petition last summer in order to get the lights switched back on, a campaign which garnered more than 2000 signatures, events such as a torchlight procession and the tying of yellow ribbons to lampposts also formed part of the campaign.
Last week Suzy handed her petition to Essex County Council but also to Leader of Harlow District Council, Jon Clempner.
Harlow’s blackout is opposed by groups such as the AA who claim it increases the potential for road traffic accidents. Shift workers have also been affected, being forced totravel home in the pitch black.
Lobbying from figures such as Suzy Stride has led the national Labour party to advocate local authorities switching to low energy LED lighting rather than plunging the local area in darkness by night time switch offs.
This was a fait accomplished during an election year. Harlow, Labour councillors always intended to give more money from Harlow tax payers to Chelmsford. Has this been costed? What is going as a consequence? No doubt this will start around, let's say "May". Very handy in the summer.
To say on leaflets that Councillors from other parties did nothing is plain wrong and a lie! All three Council Group Leaders wrote a letter demanding Essex turn the lights back on! As Carra says - we'll learn soon how much Labour will increase Harlow's Council Tax by to give Suzy her "Political victory!"
Make the 'travellers' cough up - that'll put 50 grand into the lighting fund.