Letter to Editor: A Sumners and Kingsmoor resident asks: “Where have all the leaflets gone?”
General / Mon 11th Apr 2022 am30 09:21am
WITH the local elections due on May 5 it was my belief that leaflets from the four parties contesting Sumners and Kingsmoor ward would be cascading onto my doormat, but I have been sadly disappointed by three of them.
I received my first leaflet from the Conservatives on February 13 with a following Harlow Sun in March.
Yet, almost two months later, I have not had any leaflets from Labour, Greens or Harlow Alliance Party.
Do these three parties want my vote or do they hope to cash in on the people’s anger at Downing Street parties?
It is opportunist to use national issues to win local elections without even an explanation of what policies are a priority for any given political candidate. After all, even if I were inclined to punish Boris Johnson I still wish to know whether I’m voting for an improvement on the incumbent Tory councillor Nick Churchill.
I clearly understand what Harlow Conservatives wish to deliver because they have spent the time and money on information for me to read. The opposition parties must hope I have a crystal ball. I know from past experience that Labour’s candidate, Aiden O’Dell, operates on that basis.
Maybe, with the rising cost of living, the opposition parties can’t afford to print leaflets? Having examined recent Labour social media posts I observed the larger style postcards being displayed, which may be a result of their well known financial acumen or a large drop in their membership along with a big drop in councillor levy.
Possibly, Harlow Labour may have spent their money on Momentum inspired jamborees? Another likely explanation is that more moderate members of the party have left and they were the ones donating the larger sums of money. Either way, the electorate in Sumners and Kingsmoor have been left in the dark.
The only thing I know about the Green Party is that they are on the side of people who like to glue themselves to motorways and I believe Harlow Alliance Party is a home for washed-up former Ukip members.
My impressions may be wrong, but they can rectify my illusions by posting a leaflet through my letterbox.
Good point David, probably money? I doubt the Greens and Alliance party can afford to pay for delivery services especially since the Royal Mail has been privatised and the Harlow Star is no more. 60,000 or so dwellings to visit after a hard day's work must be a daunting task, especially with the realization that 80% of residents won't turn out on polling day.. Looks like my vote is a toss up between Pizza or Donner Kebab delivery!!
Thank you David for taking the opportunity to raise this issue of leafleting. As you may be aware, the Green Party was only relaunched when I took part in the Mark Hall By Election back July, since then our membership has grown sufficiently to have candidates in 10 out of 11 wards in Harlow. We are a very lean team and are doing our best to get around our wards whilst juggling jobs and family life and, despite not being elected yet, helping residents with issues that have not progressed with their current councillor. You can read all about the Harlow Green Party on our website: www.Harlow.Greenparty.org.uk and please feel free to complete our 60 second survey. If you would like Terry Patrick, your candidate, to visit you, please send us your full address via our contact form on the website and we can arrange a time at your best convenience.
Almost certainly money. The Tory Party can afford to pay for delivery, the other parties rely on volunteers. I know because I deliver leaflets for the Labour Party. If you’re actually interested it is possible to find out what the other parties stand for, but of course if you just want to vote on the basis of who has the most money, feel free.
Labour have lost most of their activists (lost faith) like they lost the constituency last may.
Leaflets tend to make promises that can't be kept, mix local, county and national government issues and push half truths. Parties in power step round the limits set on election expenditure by posting "Council " newsletters lording their achievements and giving publicity to their candidates all paid for by us the taxpayers. The Conservatives have posted so many news papers and leaflets that one questions how they haven't breeched the legally set limits. What's the answer: many more probing local press interviews such as those published by Your Harlow of all candidates and video'd hastings and a requirement for all parties to use exactly the same format of official policy statements with costed details of how they intend to address all of the locally relevant issues, these could be identified by dependently conducted surveys and consultations. Otherwise it's the same recipe for half truths, mud slinging, mismanagement, blame games and ya boo politics. It might help if the electorate could instigate votes of no confidence half way through a term eg if supported by 6000 electors. It might stop crazy schemes like the decimation of the River Stort Valley, deceptions like new hospitals in 2 years and failures to even fix pot holes in the roads.
On behalf of the Harlow Alliance Party I can advise you that our campaign starts this coming weekend. Our website www.harlowallianceparty.org gives a lot of information about what we have been doing and it will be updated with our election material over the weekend. We simply cannot match the financial resources of the other Parties. Any expenses incurred before the election is called are not subject to the constraints imposed once it has been called. The Conservatives in the Ward I am contesting (Great Parndon) have today delivered their 5th leaflet, at least some of these have been delivered by a delivery firm, so I know from what we have been able to spend that the Conservatives will have spent tens of thousands of pounds across the whole town before the election takes place. As for hustings, we would love the opportunity to participate, the more the merrier.
I was asked to deliver the leaflets. I just threw them in the bin., thought it would cut out the middle man, save energy and all that. Ha ha. They all said the same thing. The current administration is failing us and our administration will make all your dreams come true.insert party name in box at top of leaflet
I would point out that all the Conservative leaflets have been delivered by volunteers, current councillors and the candidates themselves. I am on my fifth leaflet in Staple Tye!
If I read your letter correctly Mr. Forman are you suggesting that you will vote on the basis of receiving one leaflet from the Conservative party? Surely not.
Labour’s leaflet mentions nothing the Council is responsible for. It says nothing, which matches their performance after almost a decade of administration….nothing!
Like I have said before, never trust a Tory. Cllr Hardware is wrong again, The Harlow Sun, a Tory publication delivered to households in February and March clearly states close to the top of the front page that it is 'Delivered free to Harlow residents by professional Harlow delivery company dor-2-dor. The cost of this was borne before the election was called so does not count when Party expenses need to be toted up, but the cost was probably more than the whole budget available to HAP, the Green Party, Liberal Democrats put together.
David Forman, I can assure you that members of the Harlow Alliance Party come from all parts of the political spectrum. We chose the name of Alliance because we are a group of people who put the future well being of Harlow and it's residents first and are fed up with the Council taking the 'we know best' attitude' by taking deliberate action to keep us all in the dark. The Tories are just as bad, they recently carried out eight public consultation exercises, who knew, because they received just 185 responses. In all the meetings of the membership of HAP the subject of Brexit has never been mentioned. Just to conclude, leaflets are on there way to every household from next weekend. Nicholas Taylor, Leader of the Harlow Alliance Party.
Who wants a conservative leaflet anyway? It's Russian money paid to print them!!
I received a tory leaflet today claiming that "The new Conservative Council" has delivered a £205 Council Tax. I thought perhaps this was in addition to the £150 the govt is paying me because my bills and taxes are going up, unfortunately not, the £150 is a govt contribution not a Harlow Council one. Of course there was no mention that our council tax is actually going up because of the tory county council. Nicholas Taylor makes an interesting point about the tories having delivered 5 leaflets in Great Parndon-I guess this shows how concerned they are about the Alliance party.
I suspect the main reason the Harlow Alliance Party is only contesting two wards is because that equates to its total membership.
Dear Ralph, I can assure you that is not the case. The many residents who have had direct contact with our members will be all to aware of that.
All Harlow voters need to know there are four COUNTY Council Councillors who are also HDC Councillors and all four are Conservative. They are partly responsible for the increase in the COUNTY Council Tax this year, yet ECC has such a poor "Customer Service" consistantly. Are any of the four up election this May?