I am quite interested in politics, and after the year we’ve had, it should be very clear to everyone how important politics at all levels is.
But, due to the pandemic, I’ve not really been able to see much of the town (I’ve only been here 6 months), and so I don’t know what are the burning issues/political pain points are in the town (apart from housing which everyone seems to be unhappy about)
Most importantly, with elections coming up, I don’t really know who is in my area to vote for. I know there’s a page online, but it doesn’t really list any Conservative candidates yet, so it seems incomplete.
So I guess I’m hoping for this post to be my “one stop shop”/summary of everything political in Eastleigh. Is the town really just about housing?
Hey @DazzaRPD , welcome aboard and welcome to the area!
I’m not sure it really is clear to everyone how important politics is. I think there is even now, a growing disengagement between the real world and politics. Many people do not take time to understand things - and so are led blindly by the advert, those with the bigger wallet, or upper hand. The world is far more complicated now than it ever was, and the situations far more complicated…
The page for who’s standing in the next local elections in Eastleigh is over here - Who is standing in Eastleigh Local Elections 2021?, feel free to help keep it up to date by hitting reply if you know of corrections / detail. Once you’ve been here long enough to be trusted, you’ll be able to edit it yourself and actively get involved in maintaining it with us.
I still only know of one conservative candidate who announced and haven’t seen anything from any others.
There are of course many other problems - traffic congestion being a top one, but if you believe the local Political Leaflets - Eastleigh Online, everything looks to be Hampshire County Council’s fault! Ho hum! Feel free to help research some of the leaflets and add commentary! I have a political interest myself so have been hoovering up the leaflets so some misleading ‘facts’ can be openly corrected.
That probably depends which bit of Eastleigh you’re in. The local plan has historically made the most noise although I’ve never been quite sure how much that really interests people outside the areas selected for development. The airport extension is currently trying to claim the top spot for hot political topics. The Hamble peninsula traffic and air quality get a fair bit of discussion. Switching off street lights at night is another. The (lack of) police station. I’m sure I’ve missed plenty!
Which website are you looking at? I think the official lists are out on the 9th April, at which point Who Can I Vote For? should have everyone.
Talking of one stop shops, I had been attempting to crowd source an Eastleigh Handbook of all things Eastleigh. So far it’s mostly just my attempt but if you’ve found anything useful since moving here, it would be great if you could add it! (The politics section is looking a bit empty!)
Almost forgot… if you’re on Twitter, follow ESLHustings for election news!
my first post too, although I have been reading the articles on here with interest over the past few weeks or so.
I am standing for Reform UK in the upcoming Eastleigh Borough Council and Hampshire County Council elections - for Eastleigh Central and Eastleigh North respectively.
I have lived in Eastleigh since late 2016, although I have strong family ties to the Southampton area (and am desperately hoping Southampton wins its second FA Cup this year!). I also get down to the Silverlake when I can.
I have found Eastleigh a great place to live, but it could be even greater. I am for:
a new police station for Eastleigh town. The old one closed a couple of years back. Local policing is now conducted from a low profile business centre on a industrial estate on Shakespeare Road. I have witnessed a lot of anti-social behaviour and violent crime near where I live since the station closed (and by my calculations UKCrimeStats is showing an 174% increase in anti-social behaviour in Eastleigh Central year-on-year between 2019-2020). I can’t help but think that the closure of the Police station has helped to encourage this. I realise that there are limitations to what a Councillor could do here (given the remit of Police and Crime Commissioners, but I could make some noise about this if elected);
the expansion of the runway at Southampton Airport. I live not far off the flight path, but I didn’t find the noise that bad. I read the report - it didn’t look like the noise would be that much worse. Ok, air quality would be slightly reduced. However, I think the ability to offer new services would help reduce the volume of traffic up to Heathrow and Gatwick, so there is a bit of netting there. Moreover, I believe the expansion would be great for the local economy despite what some have said. The airport needs all the help it can get after the Flybe disaster. Granted, this issue should be settled before the election, but it is probably one of the biggest talking points in the area at the moment so it’s only fair that everyone knows where I stand on it;
improving the upkeep of public spaces. For example, walking routes in and around the ward/district I am standing in need a bit more TLC. I have often wandered down by the river from Allbrook way down to Eastleigh Rugby Club during lockdown, only to discover that the footpaths and banks in some areas have completely disintegrated. May sound trivial, but this type of exercise has been essential for one’s mental health during the lockdown (and unfortunately, I think we are not done with lockdowns yet);
doing what one can to help local businesses as much as possible. This can be ‘hard’ (e.g. cash, free parking) or ‘soft’ assistance (e.g. through creating networks of business people who could assist each other through shared expertise that would otherwise be expensive to obtain). There have been some good start ups in the area - Evi in town is the latest example (tried it last Friday, recommend). Reform UK believes that government at whatever level should try and alleviate the burden by simplifying the tax code and reducing red tape to encourage more entrepreneurship like this; and
finally, whatever your political colours are, the lack of plurality on Eastleigh Borough Council is really damaging in my opinion. How can there be any serious accountability when 33/39 councillors all represent the same party (here: Liberal Democrat)? It’s like a one party autonomous republic here. We really need to mix it up.