As with many of the new towns created by the Attlee and Wilson governments, Milton Keynes is a very green and pleasant land, with much rural fringe in the immediate vicinity of the city centre, ranging from Stoney Stratford to Bletchley. It makes for an interesting setting for a huge number of apple trees, dotted throughout the area of the Woughton & Fishermead ward that ends up being the location of our door-knocking throughout the day.
Andrew Pakes our excellent candidate picks us up from the station and we soon meet up with the rest of the team outside the offices of the Woughton Community Council – another example of the recent rural history of the area being that the whole of Milton Keynes is, and continues to be parished. As we have written elsewhere parish councils are an important part of our democratic settlement and any devolutionary settlement should consider their future role as much as any invention of sub-national bodies to take responsibility for infrastructures – only town and parish councils are close enough to communities to respond to the quality of life issues that make most difference to people’s day-to-day lived experience. There’s also a case for these councils having a bit more power, not least on housing, to help deliver our housing pledge to local people through the neighbourhood planning process, where local people can really see housing that will benefit local people.
A good six hours on the doorstep sees a great majority of contacts being Labour voters; that’s good news given how close this seat is, with a recent Ashcroft poll having Labour with a two point lead. It is one of those straight Labour/Tory marginals that is the right side of the cusp of majority Labour government. So if you have some time before election day, or on election day and live in a safe seat in North London do consider heading here. Making sure we win this seat is more important to our prospects of governing that maximising the vote in seats we will be winning, and it is only £10 day return and 35 minutes from Euston – you know it makes sense!
You can read more about Andrew’s campaign and get details of who to contact or where to be here.
Hywel Lloyd is a Co-founder of Labour: Coast & Country
The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of, and should not be attributed to, the Labour: Coast & Country