Ward by Ward: Mark Hall: Who will make their mark in this unpredictable seat?
Elections / Sun 1st May 2022 pm31 01:34pm
LABOUR were very upset at losing the seat of Mark Hall last year. The Conservatives won by a majority of 494. Six months later, there was a by-election. The Conservatives won again but this time with a majority of just 56.
Labour veterans have seen this before. In 2014, they lost to UKIP. Six months later there was a by-election and on that occasion, they got the seat back.
They are hoping for success this time. Should Labour win under former councillor Lanie Shears, then they may feel it is a Labour gain.
Conservative councillor John Steer is defending the seat. A long time loyal Conservative who does a lot of work behind the scenes. A loyal backbencher.
But the Conservative vote is very temperamental in this ward: Just look at the percentage share:
2014: 18%. 2015: 32% 2016: 23% 2018: 38% 2019: 23% 2021: 61%
Funnily enough, that is how we have described the Labour candidate Lanie Shears. Lanie enjoys interviews as much as root canal treatment. However, in her time as a councillor, Ms Shears just go ton with her job. She would take on case work, she would sit on the back bench in council. She would be a key member of a number of committees. A passionate advocate of equality.
Lanie is not alone in preferring that role and all parties are desperate for more people like that.
The Green candidate, Jamie Gilbert appeared from nowhere at the Mark Hall by-election. And now he has nine other colleagues. He may have only polled 89 votes in the by-election but he was clearly laying roots.
It will be fascinating to see whether he gets more votes this time and where they come from.
YH Prediction: Labour Gain: 100-ish
Jamie Gilbert (Green)
Lanie Shears (Labour)
John Steer (Cons)
Result: Oct 2021
John Steer (Cons): 549
Kay Morrison (Labour): 493
Jamie Gilbert (Green): 86
Lesley Rideout (Lib Dems): 55
In all honesty I think Greens could surprise people and pull in a lot more protest votes than people think, and I hope for the sake of Harlow that they get at least a few councillors in order to give local people more of a voice. To the people. USE YOUR VOICES! VOTE! but don't feel obligated to vote for the same old red or blue lies, break the tug of war that we seem to be locked in at the moment with local voices ignored by our elected officials. Give them a worry and show both sides we want change, and if they can't deliver Greens surely will.
Yesterday I walked along the cycle track that runs from Edinburgh Way to Glebeland/Tanys Dell at the back of B and Q. The amount of rubbish was appalling. Now, I know that the council don't drop the rubbish but presumably they are charged with clearing it and there are sums of money in the budget for this purpose. So why don't they. And if the money isn't there would it not have better to not reduce the council tax but to use the extra funds to the benefit of the town. John Steer, you told me the other day you were a gardener, surely you should notice these things more than most, especially on your ward. You conservatives talk about regeneration but you cant even keep this cycle track tidy.
A lot of folks on here saying they will vote for Greens but that will just give the looney left more chance of winning and back to the old ways, Before i get shot down i think that the Cons and Lab and the Stort valley issue is appalling but would sooner have the present bunch of liars than Labour running the town.