Wednesday, 29 October 2014

29 Oct 2014 Hannah Patton selected as Green Party Candidate for Maidstone and the Weald

Maidstone Green Party has announced its parliamentary candidate for Maidstone and The Weald as Hannah Patton. The announcement comes after a tough selection process and ballot of all local members.

Hannah is 28, works locally as a youth worker and is a former Member of the Youth Parliament for Maidstone.

Hannah Patton, Green Party Parliamentary Candidate for Maidstone and the Weald: "I have been passionate about politics from a very young age, and have been actively involved since I became part of Maidstone Youth Forum 14 years ago.

"Young people have a lot to offer but the younger voter is under represented in parliamentary discussions. I would like young people to have the same opportunities to engage with politics that I have had.

"The future is starting to look bleak for young people, climate change is beginning to shape our weather while government has been hell bent on trying to force pupils through a one-size fits all education system than leaves them disillusioned and ill prepared for the future.

"But education can make a difference. Focussing education on skills for the future is essential. We need to teach young people to think for themselves and to engage with their communities. We must have more focus on citizenship education including sex and relationships, health, politics, alcohol and drug information, as well as money management.

"Our reliance on non-renewable energy must come to an end. The only energy sources that will last into the future are renewable sources and we must switch to these as soon as we can.

"I will be campaigning hard against ‘fracking’ which is likely to come to mid Kent very soon. Fracking is hugely polluting and completely unnecessary.

"And of course, I would really love to represent Maidstone again in Parliament!”

Monday, 20 October 2014

21 Oct 2014 Anger at Fant Farm housing plan

Local Greens have reacted with anger at plans to build on Fant Farm despite huge local opposition stretching back for many years. The Greens fought hard to get Fant Farm removed from the housing plan but the entire housing plan was rejected by Maidstone Borough Council and it has become open season for developers.

Ian McDonald, Prospective Green Party candidate for Fant Ward: "I was horrified to learn of the plans by Gleason Developments to press ahead with a scheme for 270 homes on Fant Farm, a beautiful green-field sit. This is in spite of highly publicised widespread local opposition to plans for new housing on this beauty spot and indeed on other Maidstone green sites, while so many more suitable "brown" sites exist.

"In Maidstone there is a real need for new homes especially social and affordable housing, however is is very doubtful that the Fant Farm development will be anything other than executive homes for the rich.  There is more profit to be made from unhindered new housing developments on green fields than by making former commercial or built sites suitable for homes.

"This is especially sad given our previous campaign to get Fant Farm removed from the local housing plan. While we were partially successful, the Council has thrown the entire plan out, possibly with good intentions, but meaning there is now no plan at all! It seems to be open season for developers.

"The developers' plans include a "country park" on part of the site, but it would be smaller than the present area, and nothing like the present farmland and vistas. In any case the present infrastructure, schools, health centres, bus services and congested streets in Fant cannot support an increase in residential demand on the scale envisaged.

"We believe our Council should get their act together to ensure they do everything they can to stop this unwanted development from going ahead."

ends

Leaflet from Gleeson is here:
http://maidstone.greenparty.org.uk/FF1.jpg
http://maidstone.greenparty.org.uk/FF2.jpg
http://maidstone.greenparty.org.uk/FF3.jpg