Your City Council was controlled by the Conservative Party from May 2003 until May 2019. At the May election BREXIT was very much in the news and many of our supporters stayed at home in protest, with the result that control of the Council was lost, with the Liberal Democrats taking control.
The current position is as follows:-
Lib Dems 30 seats
Conservatives 21 seats
Independents 5 seats
Vacant 1 seat
Since that election Conservatives in Chelmsford turned out in force last December in support of our Members of Parliament, Vicky Ford in Chelmsford, John Whittingdale in Maldon and Kemi Badenoch in Saffron Walden.
Many excellent City Councillors lost their seats in May 2019, but what they left behind was an excellent council, run by excellent officers and in good financial shape, with no debt. Average council tax is £200 per household and our record is one that we are immensely proud of.
During the period in which Conservatives ran the council, it became the first City in Essex, enlarged and modernised the Museum, built a new sports facility and swimming pool at Riverside, introduced recycling of plastics and food waste, built the new Grand Pavilion at Hylands Park and a new grandstand at the Athletics Centre in Melbourne, modernised the Market and refurbished High Chelmer car park, put in new children’s play areas in many parts of the City and much, much more.
Many derelict brownfield sites have been developed, most of which had been left untouched by the previous Lib Dem Administration for years and land was sold to provide funds for the new facilities listed above. The Gas Works site was purchased after 13 years of negotiation and Government money obtained to develop it. The land at the end of the peninsula was sold and the development there is providing much-needed affordable homes, as are other major developments in the City, including the new Garden Village at Beaulieu.
A new Local Plan was produced by the Conservative Administration and adopted by the Lib Dems in May 2020. The new Railway Station at Beaulieu has been given the go-ahead, together with the North East by-pass, both of which will reduce traffic in Chelmsford city centre and on the A12 and a huge Government grant has been obtained with work starting in 2022.
People may feel about politicians, ‘They are All the Same’, and not vote at all. But that allowed an unrepresentative group who have no experience of running a large and complex organisation, to take over Chelmsford Council. We have already seen the Lib Dems introducing huge amounts of new bureaucracy and wasting your money. They planted large numbers of trees but did not look after them, with 50% dying and have now pledged to spend £4m on planting over the next four years at a time when every penny is needed to fight COVID.
During the next three years your Conservative City Councillors will work hard on your behalf to ensure that Chelmsford Council is run properly and that your money is not wasted. They will, of course, also be carrying out their normal Ward duties and these pages show who represents you and who you can contact when you need help.
The pandemic has had a terrible effect on the whole world and many people are still suffering, with businesses closing down and unemployment increasing. It is hard to predict how long this will last, but be assured that your Conservative City Councillors will do their very best to support you.
COUNCILLOR ROY WHITEHEAD
Chelmsford City Conservatives