Saturday, 31 January 2015

"Parkway Prats" Support Station They Once Opposed

Green Party Councillor and Thanet South General Election Candidate Ian Driver has denounced TDCs Labour Cabinet as “Parkway Prats”. His comment follows their recent decision to support Kent County Council’s plans for a £14million Parkway Station at rural Cliffsend after having strongly opposed the idea during the last Council elections in 2011.
Said Driver “I am flabbergasted by the jaw-dropping scale of Thanet Labour’s hypocrisy. In 2011 they sought election on a manifesto commitment to “support moves to reduce the travel time to London but not at the expense and environmental damage of a new Parkway Station”.
In an article on Thanet Labour Party’s blog site dated 24 April 2011, Richard Nicholson the current Deputy Leader of the Council said “are we expected to believe that this (Parkway Station) is a good use of public money?... this (Parkway Station) will create an enormous parking need on green land and more traffic snarl ups especially at peak times….This Parkway is not justified nor needed”.  On 20th January 2015 the same Richard Nicholson agreed “to note the current position with regard to progress on the Thanet Parkway Station and confirmed support for the project”.  I wonder why he has changed his mind?
Writing on the Thanet Labour Blog site on 3 May 2011, just 2 days before the council election Councillor Clive Hart, said “we’ve outlined our continued support for shortening travel times to London. However, Thanet Labour is always mindful of our local environment as a Parkway station with a huge car park, just doesn’t make economic sense”
But on becoming Leader of the Council just one year later Hart, who also assumed responsibility for economic development, quickly changed his mind about the Parkway Station. He engaged in secretive discussions with Kent County Council, Dover and Canterbury Councils and the Kent and Medway Local Economic Partnership which resulted in the publication, in early 2013,  of Unlocking the Potential: Going for Growth – Kent and Medway’s Growth Plan, which supported the development of a Ramsgate Parkway Station. I wonder why Hart, like Nicholson also changed his mind? Hart was later replaced as Leader by Iris Johnston who  enthusiastically supports, the Parkway Station plan. I wonder why she has changed her mind?
I am amazed that Thanet  Labour  has never had the honesty and decency to tell the voters that they have changed their mind about a key manifesto pledge? It’s astonishing that a modern political party which claims to listen to the people, should make false promises to the voters of Thanet and when safely elected and in charge deceitfully go back on their word.  But there again, as I explained in a previous post, this is not the first time Thanet Labour have lied to and duped the voters.  They did exactly the same  thing when they recently allowed the building of houses on the EKO  site at New Haine Road, after having said in their 2011 manifesto they would oppose developments  on green field sites. Labour-led Thanet Council has now demonstrated on at least 2 occasions that when it comes to promises to the voters they are liars and hypocrites. Saying one thing and doing totally the opposite. This is especially worrying because the promises they have broken were all about protecting Thanet’s environment which, has the draft local plan shows, is under serious threat of overdevelopment. A party as dishonest and deceitful as  this is surely not fit for public office!  Ranting aside, I share many of the  reservations about the environmental impact of a
Thanet Parkway station which were raised by the Labour Party in 2011. I am also extremely worried that the development of a Ramsgate Parkway station will be a magnet for developers to  embark upon massive housebuilding programmes around rural Cliffsend which,  until we have a local plan in place in 2017, will be legally irresistible.Finally in 2011 Richard Nicholson warned that the development of the Parkway station might threaten the continued existence Ramsgate station.  It’s interesting to note that Labour Parliamentary hopeful Will Scobie also thinks that Ramsgate station’s future is questionable. Just over a year ago the Thanet Gazette reported that
“COUNTY Councillor Will Scobie has questioned the need to refurbish Ramsgate rail station when there is the possibility of a new station being built on the isle Cllr Scobie, who is also the Labour prospective parliamentary candidate for South Thanet, said: "I am fully supportive of these plans as long as Ramsgate station continues to be used. The lack of consultation about the proposed new Thanet Parkway station concerns me. If that goes ahead do we need to spend £400,000 improving a station that will decline in use?”
Surely if Ramsgate station, which saw the arrival and departure of more than one million passengers” last year,  is to be protected then the Parkway station must be opposed. No ifs, buts or maybes.
Sadly the Parkway Prats who make up the Council’s Cabinet and aspire to represent the town in Parliament  don’t’ see it this way!
I will be posting soon of the environmental implications of the Parkway Station  
Here's something to do with Parks and Prats

My Letters to The Press Local Plan and Drugs

Wednesday, 28 January 2015

Farage Will Devastate Thanet's Economy.

Green Party Councillor and Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for Thanet South, Ian Driver,  says that UKIPs “Little England policies will cause serious damage to Thanet’s economy leading to a massive rise in unemployment, the collapse of local businesses and hardship for many families”.
His comments follow the publication of a report by the South West Research Company which estimates that Thanet’s  Language Schools generate  a staggering  £47.8 million per year. Based upon detailed economic research carried out in 2013 the report claims that:
·         Approximately £6.3 million per year is paid to  the districts 2,800 host families
·         Students of the language schools accounted for approximately 495,000 visitor overnight stays in Thanet
·         Language students spend on average £28 per day  in local shops, cafes, bars and restaurants  
·         1,138 jobs were directly or indirectly created in Thanet as a result of the Language Schools and their students
Many local businesses have said that the Language Schools and their students make up a high percentage of their customer base, and that they would struggle to keep going without them.
Said Driver “this report demonstrates, with extensive well researched facts and figures,  what many people already knew to be true; that Thanet’s economy and thousands of jobs are  dependent upon the districts Language Schools”.
“The report estimates that 71% of the language school students come from western, central and eastern Europe. If Nigel Farage’s  UKIP succeeds in taking  us out of the EU it will be much harder and more expensive for these European students to travel to the UK and perhaps they will look at other EU destinations to develop their English skills such as Ireland”.
“Nigel Farage likes to portray himself as a plain speaking person with common sense ideas. The truth is that he is plain stupid because the consequences of UKIPs Little England policies could lead to the closure of Thanet’s Language Schools  spelling  devastation for the local economy.  Unemployment would rocket, many businesses would fold and the already high rates of deprivation and poverty would increase”.
He added “this is probably the first time in political history that a candidate has stood for election advocating polices which will  seriously harm and damage the living standards of most of his voters. As every day passes it is becoming clearer that the leadership of  UKIP are a rag-tag band of foolish, foreigner-hating  misfits bereft of any sensible policy. To vote for this shower could be very dangerous”.
Driver said that a Green led council would make it a priority to work with the Districts Language schools to support and further develop their business enabling an  expansion of the industry and more spin off benefits for the people of  Thanet.

Sunday, 25 January 2015

Dame Janet; Farage’s Nemesis?

So Nigel Farge the misguided Craig McInlay and Russ Timpson are clinging to their laddish beliefs that men only hustings are a jolly jape. Like tap-room tyrants they circulate mocking tweets and photographs deriding me for refusing to join their   top table because women have been excluded from the audience. Although he didn’t turn up either, Labour’s Will Scobie is clearly scared of unambiguously aligning himself against gender exclusion at a parliamentary hustings; saying to the press he didn’t want to make a “song and dance of it” and he didn’t want to upset the Round Table because of their excellent charitable work.

Well I am deeply ashamed of Farage, McInaly, Timpson and even Scobie. Their pathetic response to the men only hustings might explain why in South Thanet women are paid on average £107 per week less than men; why in South Thanet more women are living poverty than men. It might explain also why the overwhelming majority of MPs, who they aspire to join, have remained tight lipped and silent about flying flags on Government buildings at half-mast to mark of the death of the despot King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia. A despot who ruled over a country which treats women like chattels, which publicly beheads  and flogs women, which excludes them from politics and bans them from driving. Yes boys it’s so funny to joke about inclusivity isn’t it! But they forget one thing. Ramsgate has a tradition of women’s equality. It was home to the indefatigable Dame Janet.  A pioneering female politician, she was elected to the Town Council in 1913 long before most women could legally vote. She became Ramsgate’s first woman Mayor in 1923 and was a staunch supporter of the suffragettes. She was also a major patron of the town.

I wonder how Dame Janet might have felt about women being excluded from parliamentary hustings meetings.  I wonder how she might have felt about the immature and jokey way in which most of Ramsgate’s Parliamentary hopefuls have treated this incident.
Dame Janet and what she stood for still commands great respect in Ramsgate. Perhaps some politicians need to think a bit more carefully. What Are You Afraid of Boys????

Friday, 23 January 2015

Ramsgate Port & O'Regan's Things You Need to Know

Green Councillor and South Thanet Parliamentary Candidate, Ian Driver, has called on TDC to “conduct an extremely thorough examination of the history of the O’Regan Group and its associated companies before it contemplates developing any type of commercial relationship with this organisation”.
Driver’s warning is based upon information he has uncovered about the involvement of companies linked to the O’Regan Group in major pollution scandals and court cases in Ireland.
In an article in the Irish Times of May 2005 it was reported that

Cork County Council could face a clean-up bill of €43 million if an environmental study on the effect of illegal dumping on an area of special conservation concludes that the area requires restoration. The council will take a €200,000 civil action in the High Court in Dublin next week against the firm responsible for the dumping, in an effort to secure funding for a full investigation into the ecological damage.
In February, Aggregate Supplies and Transport (AST) Ltd was fined €100,000 for dumping 100,000 tonnes of waste at Weir Island, Barryscourt, Carrigtwohill, Co Cork. The council had claimed AST was using builders' rubble, soil, subsoil, plastics and timber to fill in an old quarry, and that the dumping also affected 5,000-6,000 square metres designated as a natural heritage area of special conservation. AST, through Louis O'Regan, pleaded guilty to disposing of waste without an appropriate licence at the site on December 17th, 2003, and to a second charge of holding, recovering or disposing of waste in a manner that was likely to cause pollution. Judge Patrick Moran said: "This was no small enterprise to bring 100,000 tonnes of waste on to the site. The defendant had a total disregard for the requirements of waste management legislation." Despite the success of the criminal proceedings against AST, the council is left with the problem of cleaning up the area. A council source said: "The questions are, to what extent the quarry will have to be cleared out or capped, and to what extent the material will have to be removed to have some of the wildlife habitats restored." Full ecological investigation of the site will cost an estimated €200,000. The council has already received a quote of €43 million if the site has to be restored. It will appear before Judge Frank Clarke on Thursday to sue AST for €200,000. It is also expected to ask the judge to "lift the corporate veil" to make Mr O'Regan personally responsible for damages. It is thought Cork council will cite a High Court case of July 2002, when Judge Philip O'Sullivan made such a judgment in a case of illegal dumping, Wicklow County Council v Fenton, Swalcliffe Ltd. Swalcliffe's directors were ordered to carry out remediation work on a site in Coolnamadra, despite claiming they had no knowledge of illegal dumping. When contacted by The Irish Times, Mr O'Regan, who owns the land and the quarry, denied the material was affecting an area of special conservation and vowed to fight any personal liability. "I am not concerned in the least, as the legal owner of the material is actually the council. It is their responsibility. I will appeal it to the European Commission as the material came from projects funded by the EU," he said. "The material there has not and will not ever cause any pollution. I live there. It's immaculate."

In an Irish Examiner article  dated 26 June  2008 an O’Regan Group related company is alleged by the Irish Government to have been involved in the unauthorised excavation to toxic material at the site of a former Irish Steel Plant at  Haulbowline Island in Cork Harbour, in what has become one of Ireland’s most serious pollution scandals in recent times. 

The Department of the Environment last night said any suggestions of a “cover-up” of the scale of the contamination at the Irish Steel site were “entirely false”. In a statement, the department said it had acted on best expert advice when deciding how to deal with the waste at the site. The department said it had hired Hammond Lane Metal Company Ltd to carry out a “surface clearance” of the site and its waste tip. The waste and debris on the surface had been caused by the demolition and decontamination of the Irish Steel buildings.
Inert waste beneath the surface — such as in the lagoons — was to remain untouched. It is understood expert advice suggested this inert waste would prove an immediate threat only if disturbed. The surface clearance was the “final step” in getting the site to a position where a risk analysis, could be carried out and decisions taken on its future remediation. However, the site surface clearance was not undertaken by Hammond Lane, but by subcontractors Louis J O’Regan Ltd. The department made clear it had never entered a contract with the latter.
“Louis J O’Regan Ltd is a sub-contractor of a sub-contractor of Hammond Lane Metal Company Ltd,” said the department. Louis J O’Regan Ltd uncovered a “sub-surface sludge pit” of hazardous waste and began “a series of unauthorised works”, the department said — in other words, removing some of the waste from the lagoon. The department, with the Environmental Protection Agency and Cork County Council, wanted the lagoon capped with inert slag material — to ensure the waste did not pose a threat.
“Despite repeated instructions to stop these unauthorised works, including by letter from the Chief State Solicitor’s Office on May 23, 2008, the sub-contractor continued to excavate significant volumes of buried hazardous material,” said the statement. “Following legal advices, the contract with Hammond Lane was terminated with immediate effect on May 30, 2008, with instructions to vacate the site by 17.00 Tuesday, June 3, 2008.
“The sub-contractors refused and continued to operate without authorisation and in a piecemeal fashion, causing a threat to the environment by its actions. They finally left the site following discussions with Hammond Lane Metal Company Ltd,” the department added.
With the EPA and the council, the department said it organised “an immediate assessment” of the situation by environment consultants. “All such necessary works will be undertaken to secure the site and ensure that no danger is presented to the local environment or residents arising from unauthorised actions by Louis J O’Regan Ltd and pending the Government’s decision on the future use of the site.”
 In an article  on the Business Irish website dated 11 June 2008 details of O’Regan’s battle with the Bank of Scotland Ireland over a large unpaid debt are recounted;  along with an account about a claim on the estate of alleged relative in the USA who’s body  was exhumed after more 60 years for DNA testing.   
A Cork businessman embroiled in a $160m inheritance battle featured in an RTE documentary has been served with a €196,000 judgment by Bank of Scotland Ireland (BOSI). Detailed in next week's Stubbs Gazette, the judgment was registered against Louis O'Regan on June 3 after BOSI's financing of Mr O'Regan's machinery for a quarry project turned sour.
Mr O'Regan, a businessman in his own right, is best known for co-piloting his father Dermot's 20-year battle to establish a claim on the estate of an American woman who died in 1941. Culminating in the exhumation of two bodies in 2004 and featured in RTE's 2005 'Family Silver' series, the inheritance battle is ongoing. The claim could ultimately see Dermot O'Regan become heir to the American's $160m fortune.
Mr O'Regan last night confirmed the €200,000 judgement but said he had already began moves to counter sue BOSI.  The judgment stemmed from a dispute over money the bank loaned to Louis J O'Regan Ltd to buy machinery for quarrying work linked to the Ennis bypass, Mr O'Regan said. He added that his company later lost the bypass contract to Whelan Limestone Quarries, a competitor whose undertakings BOSI has had a floating charge over since 2003, as confirmed by records in the Companies Office. "I could write Bank of Scotland a cheque in the morning, but I'm not going to because as far as I'm concerned they're subsidising a competitor of mine, and on that basis I'm taking a legal challenge," Mr O'Regan said.
He added that BOSI is still advancing money to Whelan's even though the company's most recently published accounts are for 2003. Companies Office records show BOSI has given three loans to Whelan's since the floating charge was secured in 2003. A spokesman for the bank last night declined to comment on the bank's dealings with either Mr O'Regan or Whelan's, citing the ongoing legal wranglings. Mr O'Regan's other claims to fame include a 2003 plan to build a €10m explosives firm in Munster which ultimately morphed into a 2005 joint venture to build an explosives firm in the UK.
Meanwhile, the inheritance battle returned to the headlines in February. Mr O'Regan's family was given leave to have further tests carried out on samples from the exhumed bodies. "We're still pursuing the inheritance, but I'm snowed under with work at the moment," said Mr O'Regan. His company's activities include a new readymix plant in East London, a cement import business in south London, cleaning up the Irish Steel site in Cork, and quarrying work in Lismore, Co Waterford.

Said Driver “the evidence I have uncovered   about the O’Regan Group and its owners is causing me to wonder if they are fit and proper persons to be operating a concrete block manufacturing and waste wood processing facility at the Port of Ramsgate. I am also aware of  other issues relating to the O’Regan Group  which also raise serious questions about their plans and suitability about which I will be posting on my blog shortly and speaking to the  Council about. In my opinion I do not believe that the O’Regan Group should be allowed to operate at the Port of Ramsgate or anywhere else in Thanet. Should there be an application for planning permission or an environmental permit or negotiations to rent space,  I will be making my views  known through the proper channels. I am astounded   that 2 former senior officers of Thanet Council would try to pass off a deal with a company with such a questionable track record as being good for Thanet and Ramsgate. Mind you I shouldn't be that surprised  because one of these former officers helped to do the secret debt deferral deal with TransEuropa Ferries which has cost council taxpayers £3.4million 

Thursday, 22 January 2015

Thanet Labour Sells Our History to Bribe Voters

TDC Councillor and Green Party Election Candidate for South Thanet , Ian Driver, has expressed his “utter astonishment”  about plans to dispose of  the Theatre Royal in Margate and the Broadstairs Pavilion. Said Driver “the Theatre Royal and the Broadstairs Pavilion are iconic buildings   loved by locals and visitors alike.  I simply can’t believe that the Labour-led  Council wants to sell them off”.  This  decision, will be a massive worry to the hundreds of people campaigning to save the Pierremont Hall in Broadstairs which was recently mothballed by the Council and might now face a similar fate to the Theatre Royal and the Broadstairs Pavilion.  The decision also follows the disposal of the historic Ramsgate Pavilion to mega pub chain company Weatherspoons on a lease of over 100 years. “The Labour controlled Council is crudely  asset stripping  Thanet’s publically owned historic buildings in a cynical effort to win votes by keeping the Council Tax down in an election year” said Driver.  “I accept that these buildings are expensive to maintain, but the Council has the option of setting up charitable trusts and seeking heritage lottery and other funding sources to repair and maintain these historic buildings, but they have refused to explore these options preferring instead to privatise the cultural history of Thanet. I will be opposing these proposals and fighting against the selling off of Thanet’s family silver”.

Speaking about  the Theatre Royal, Driver said "the Council claim that they are simply seeking  a new operator on a long lease to maintain and run this beautiful Georgian building. The truth is that in these austere times and with massive cuts in grants to the arts its extremely  unlikely that an outside operator will come forward. Just look at the difficulties the Council had in securing an operator for the Dreamland Amusement Park, which is a much more lucrative proposition than the Theatre Royal. My belief is that no operator will come forward and the Council will sell off this fabulous building. Maybe  to Weatherspoons for pub?

Thanet Green Party is  opposed to selling off our historic heritage. Instead we would consult with the community and work with local  groups and charities to find new imaginative ways to preserve our rich history. There are many examples across the country of iconic buildings being preserved and profitably managed by community action, rather than asset stripped and sold for political advantage. 

 For more information contact Ian Driver on 07866588766
The reports authorising the disposals can be found here

Farage, Ramsgate Round Table & Testosterone Fueled Misogyny

Green Party election candidate for South Thanet , Ian Driver,  declined an invitation to speak at a parliamentary hustings  meeting held in Broadstairs last night because it was men only.
The meeting, organised by the Ramsgate Round Table, was attended by UKIPs Nigel Farage, Tory Craig McInlay and LibDem Russ Timpson. 
“Whilst I have great admiration for the work of the Round Table  and  their charitable fundraising, my principles do not allow me to  attend hustings events which exclude  women, men, disabled people, minority ethnic groups or LGBT  people” said Driver.
UKIP’s Nigel Farage  appeared to be making fun of Driver (and Labour’s absent candidate who failed to provide organisers with an explanation for his no-show)  by tweeting a photo  showing defaced pictures of the absent  candidates in front of their  empty seats.
“I provided a full explanation for my non-attendance to the Ramsgate Round Table” said Driver. “If Farage and the Round
Table think standing up for women’s equality is funny and something to make joke about then I pity them”.
“It’s a well known fact that UKIP and Farage are less than sympathetic to gender equality  issues , but I am very surprised and disappointed by the actions of the  Round Table. Despite their claim to be a non-political organisation, their juvenile  prank with the defaced  pictures of the absent candidates, was an effort to ridicule my principled decision not to  speak at a men only hustings meeting. Their response suggests to me that they might share UKIPs testosterone fuelled misogyny” Thanet Round Table appear to me o be #solastcentury. 
 “Women in South Thanet earn on average £107 per week less than men. They are more likely to be living in poverty than men. They face the highest rates of domestic violence in Kent. To exclude them from a meeting of parliamentary hopefuls who may be legislating on issues which will effect women  is frankly unfair, especially when they make up a majority (51.8%) of Thanet’s  population”.
Its time that Farage, McInlay, Timpson and Ramsgate Round Table stopped being so last century and accept that gender equality is a serious matter.
Last summer Driver’s daughter Suzie launched a one-girl, disguised  protest outside Broadstair’s  men-only Comrades Club.

Wednesday, 21 January 2015

Thanet JobCentres: Investigate "Criminal" Sanctions Targets

Two weeks ago I published  a post  in which I revealed that the Jobcentre Plus offices  at Ramsgate and Margate had sanctioned 5,273 benefit claims in a 21 month period  from October 2012 until June 2014. I said that this was twice the sanctioning rate of anywhere else in Kent and I speculated that this massive number of sanctions, the equivalent of 251  per month,  was “because Jobcentre bosses in Thanet are more hard-line than their colleagues elsewhere in Kent. Perhaps they are operating unofficial sanctions targets and putting pressure on front line staff to sanction first and ask questions later”. Well it looks as though I was spot on!
According to evidence submitted to the Government’s Work and Pensions Committee, who are investigating benefits sanctioning;  Jobcentre bosses have indeed been setting unofficial sanction targets in offices around the country. Staff working in Jobcentre offices have claimed  that their bosses  put them under intense pressure to meet these unofficial targets. They claim that they were threatened with disciplinary action if they did not meet these targets. It would appear that thousands of   benefit claimants, especially vulnerable claimants, are set up to fail. They are given demanding job application  targets; their job searches are subjected to forensic levels of  scrutiny, they are  forced to attend short notice
meetings – all with the deliberate intention  of  causing a breach of the so-called jobseekers agreement which then leads  to sanctions.
Much of this evidence has been reproduced in the Guardian newspaper this week and is extremely disturbing. Thousands of innocent people who’s only crime is to be vulnerable and out of work, are being bullied, harassed and victimised on the orders of Job Centre bosses, to reduce unemployment figures and cut the amount of money spent on benefits.  Many of those sanctioned are forced into destitution, poverty and reliance on friends, family and food banks to get by.  It makes me so f***ing  angry that public service  managers are allowed to  behave in this awful inhuman way. In my opinion this behaviour is verging on the criminal!
I will be making a formal complaint to Jobcentre bosses at Margate and Ramsgate. I will be asking for a full explanation as to why the rate of the sanctioning is so high in Thanet when compared with the rest of Kent. There is no justification for targeting people who are down on their luck and making their already difficult lives intolerable.

Saturday, 17 January 2015

Green Party Driver Local Plan Consultation Undemocratic and Insulting

Green Party Councillor and General Election Candidate for Thanet South, Ian Driver, has criticised the  public consultation arrangements for  Thanet Council’s Local Plan as being  “undemocratically short and totally insufficient”. He had argued that the consultation should be at least 12 weeks, but the Council’s Labour controlled Cabinet decided on 8 weeks. Driver said that the 8 week consultation period (9th January to  9th March) “does not provide enough time for people to read and make comments on the 262 page document”. He added “the local plan is one of the most important documents to
have been produced by the Council in a long time. It sets out the Council’s policies about regeneration, employment, transport, housing and the environment covering the next 16 years. It’s a long and very complex document which directly effects everyone living in Thanet, that’s why local people should be allowed more time to read and comment on it”.

Driver pointed out that last year’s public consultation on setting up a town council in Margate and parish council in Westgate took 13 weeks and that Canterbury Council’s local plan consultation in 2013 lasted 10 weeks. He also highlighted  Government  guidance on public consultation which recommends that;

“Timeframes for consultation should be proportionate and realistic to allow stakeholders sufficient time to provide a considered response. The amount of time required will depend on the nature and impact of the proposal (for example, the diversity of interested parties or the complexity of the issue and might typically vary between two and 12 weeks. For a new and contentious policy, 12 weeks or more
may  be appropriate”. (1)

“Its clear to me” said Driver “that because of its size complexity and importance,  the local plan consultation should fall within the “12 weeks or more” category. Allowing only 8 weeks on a matter as important as this is an insult to the people of Thanet and proves once again that TDCs bosses and political leaders are contemptuous of democracy and want to exclude residents from having an influence over the future of their district.”

If elected to the Council in 2015, Green Party Councillors, will be fighting for improved communication with the public including properly managed consultations on policies which effect the lives of Thanet residents.

1.   See Consultation Principles Guidance, The Cabinet Office 2013


Friday, 16 January 2015

Green Surge Hits Thanet

Thanet Green Councillor, Ian Driver, has welcomed  the huge surge in membership of the Green Party, making the Greens with 47,000 members the third largest UK wide political party ahead of UKIP and the Lib Dems. In Thanet the  membership has trebled in the past six months to 100 and support grows daily.

Driver, the  Green Party Parliamentary Candidate for Thanet South said: "While the establishment continue to claim that the Green Party is not a major party but the Lib Dems and UKIP are, we are not only polling higher than the Lib Dems but we have more members than either party.

"We had an MP four years before UKIP and we now have more MEPs than the Lib Dems. Despite the establishment wanting to silence us, there is a Green revolution happening.

"I welcome all our new members in Thanet  and across Kent. With this rapidly growing support we can get Green Councillors elected to Thanet Council this year  and begin to transform it into an open and transparent organisation which is accountable to the people. We may even have some  Green MPs elected, including here in Thanet. Events are showing that the old fashioned political parties are collapsing. Its time for modern 21st century parties with fresh new ideas to run the council and the country”