Hello all - I hope you had a nice summer, and that those of you with kids didn't find your budgets too strained with food price increases during the holidays.
This newsletter is to keep you in touch with my work in HW&B and, when relevant, the wider town, so I won't bang on about national issues here. But I know that many of you are worried about the cost of living and rising fuel costs with a harsh winter ahead. If this is the case I urge you to get in touch with your elected Conservative Hatch Warren and Beggarwood ward Councillors and ask how they are affecting policy within their party to ensure that Basingstoke residents do not go cold and hungry.
News in very brief
- I am now taking over the running of the Beggarwood Cafe Community Lunch! Having volunteered there since the start of the year, I have happily agreed to take the reins from Jenny, who has been doing a wonderful job at it for ages. Pop by the first Wednesday of every month (that's tomorrow!) at midday for a delicious lunch and a chat.
- Following my canvassing of the houses around the proposed 5G mast on Woodbury Road, I put in a representation of behalf of the residents who overwhelmingly opposed it. I'm glad to say the mast application was refused, although the developers do have chance to appeal. The best way to find a solution is for the elected ward Councillors to engage proactively with the provider to find a location that suits everyone and I hope they take this up before the appeal process begins.
- I attended my first meeting of the Patient Participation Group of Beggarwood Survey on 4th August, and am getting to know the staff involved. I'd be happy to hear from any of you that would like any concerns represented at future meetings.
- WE's Disability Awareness training was a huge success and we'll be taking our learning forward to make our campaigning more intersectional. All branch meetings are open to everyone, so if we have a topic or theme at an upcoming meeting that interests you, feel free to pop along. All details are on @wepbasingstoke on social media.
- I'm *really* excited about our meeting on 17th September, where we'll have a speaker from Make Votes Matter! They're the leaders of the collaborative movement to replace the 'First Past The Post' voting system with a proportional representation system, and we have invited every Basingstoke Councillor, all parties, and anyone that is interested to this free meeting! You can find out more and book a place here.
- I'll be chairing the Green Basingstoke 'town hall' meeting on 26th September, at which residents will be invited to ask questions of Council Leader Simon Bound about BDBC's environmental strategy. You can find out more on their Facebook page in the coming weeks.
- We are planning a vegan food event as part of Basingstoke's Green Week! Food education is something that's hugely important both for ecological and budgetary reasons. We have met with the local Green Party to discuss this and will hopefully be working together on it. As always, WE work collaboratively and in coalition with any party that will work with us to get the job done.
- Finally, we'll be resuming canvassing the ward properly very soon - if you see us out and about, come say hello.
If this is your first receipt of this newsletter you can now read back issues on this link. Do tell your friends and neighbours how they can sign up, as we want to interact with as many residents as possible, so as to serve the community better.
WE Basingstoke Branch Leader
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