Wales Branch

A Pirate and Two Police Candidates, Walk into a Church

David Elston's picture

Crime is a big area of concern in my St Athan ward of Flemingston and Eglwys Brewis, particually on the East Camp development. However the Pirate Party has elected not to stand candidates in the PCC elections. From both a Pirate perspective it's important we still be involved in the political debate and as a Cllr I must represent the views and concerns of my ward.

To this end I hosted a Police and Crime Commssioner hustings event at The Gathering Place on East Camp. There were questions on hot-topics, questions from the press and questions from the audience.

 

Invited Candidates were:

Mike Baker; Independent

Judith Woodman; Liberal Democrat

Linet Purcell; Plaid Cymru (Cancelled - Apologised)

Timothy Davies; Conservative (No Reply)

Alun Michael; Labour Incumbent (No Reply)

 

 

A Pirate's First Month in Government

David Elston's picture

It is surprising how much you can learn in a month.

Most notably, last night in my first prepped council meeting, I seconded a motion for the northern access road into St Athan to have to abide by EIA Regulations, in which event it would be necessary for the application to be accompanied by an Environmental Statement (ES). The road is for the St Athan Enterprise Zone. The statement from Welsh Ministers gave the opinion an Environmental Statement was not required and it did not have to abide by EIA Regulations, despite the road running 1.8km through Green Belt fields and multiple hedgeways.

Improvement Objectives Consultation Response

David Elston's picture

I've been speaking with home owners, tenants and visitors to St Athan both in person and online and have written a response to the Vale of Glamorgan's consultation that reflects all the concerns put to me.

 

 

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Street Lights - Ask and you shall recieve

David Elston's picture

Ever since the Vale of Glamorgan switched the lights off after midnight there have been mixed reactions. Some welcome the light not piercing through their bedroom windows any more, saving the public purse some pennies and of course, lowing our carbon footprint. However in less built up areas, there are real concerns over crime and road safety.

After receiving many concerns from the St Athan constituents, 29th March I wrote to the Vale of Glamorgan council to clarify the streetlight situation. They responded a week later with a lot of useful iformation; specifically what lights they are responcible for, where the lights are and who was involved in the decision making process.

The e-mail to me showed great deal of procedural steps were taken to try and ensure all bases were covered but I did notice a key demographic missing - the people who live in St Athan.

I have circulated the map and key of the street lighting situation but also responded to the Business & Technical Officer for Visible Services and Transport asking if there is any way we can have a review of the area now that the lighting has been practiced for over a year.

 

Open Letter to Peter Black AM

David Elston's picture

Today a Liberal Democrat leaflet came through my door along with details of the local "Lib-Dem Team". Amoungst the names I noticed a Counillor that failed to be elected as a Conservatives some years ago, so stood as an independent for the community council. He has now joined the Liberal Democrats all in the space of just a few years.

In responce to his leaflet, here is my open letter to Welsh Liberal Democrat; Peter Black AM.

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Hello Peter

Much to my regret I cannot give the Lib-Dems any of my votes.

While the Lib Dems seem to express a distance from their former coalition
partners, the Conservatives, I feel actions speak louder than words. The Lib
Dems in Bridgend have taken in a defector, former Conservative now Liberal
Democrat councillor and I believe this still shows a strong link between Lib
Dems and the Tories.

While I understand a by-election is not required by the EC, I think it is very
telling that a by-election was not called, perhaps given that your party, the
Lib Dems do not think their mandate is different enough from the

St Athan Community Council Co-option

David Elston's picture

Hello fellow Pirates

Yesterday I was successful in my co-option on to the St Athan Community Council. It was proposed to the Council in February and I was voted in at the March meeting.

St Athan is a place that matters a great deal to me. My business is there, my partner is in the middle of purchasing her first house there, my grandfather and other family members have lived there and were rather popular in the community.

It is becoming an increasingly sought after place to live and certainly to return to. Many of the residents went to the same schools as I did and consider it a good area. I also find my own tenants are returning to St Athan as their real "home".

I wanted this co-option to be as transparent as possible. I disclosed my party, my union, had a meeting with the other councillors where my skills, knowledge and aims were all brought out into the open.

Green Party Conference - No Lessons Learned for Wales

David Elston's picture

Pippa started with giving props, as I suppose all leaders do by saying they had an incredible year in Wales. Most of the successes she talks of are of course true but she doesn't acknowledge any failures, areas of growth or what the Greens in Wales need to do in order to become more electable. There was no mention of needing to find candidates to fill all areas and stop standing paper candidates that ride in on Green Party popularity. Perhaps most concerning, the Greens were the party that lost the most deposits in GE2015 and wasted a drastic amount of money. Rather than taking the Lib Dem's approach of fielding candidates with strong local support and punching through in a swing seat, they just carpet bombed the entire UK.

Consultation for Responsible Recreation

David Elston's picture

Welsh Government's consultation "Improving opportunities to access the outdoors for responsible recreation"
Consultation ended: 02/10/2015 
http://gov.wales/consultations/environmentandcountryside/improving-opportunities-to-access-the-outdoors/?lang=en
How we respond:
AccessandOutdoorRecreation@wales.gsi.gov.uk
(cc admin@watersofwales.org.uk)
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The Pirate Party UK and the Pirate Party of Wales (Plaid Môr-leidr Cymru) welcomes this consultation and the opportunity it provides for the people of Wales to influence the Government's thinking on these matters.

Silent gratitude isn’t much use to anyone

David Elston's picture

I was running through my head the number of people who helped make the Bridgend 106 a reality and thought to myself “I must thank them”. By the time I tallied them all up, a blog post seemed inevitable. So many people worked tirelessly to give Piracy a voice in our democracy.

Let's get started!

I think it would be pretty bold of me  to start a series of Thank-Yous without starting with Loz. As I have said before, you're the first leader of any party who I actually believed and who I could tell actually believed in what he was saying. You never once resigned to the tired old Westminster soundbites and despite everything, delivered you next sentence with a grace and cheer that gives our politics a sense of hope, something the other party leaders should really take note of. I've never seen a leader so approachable, even on the night of the count, you checked in with me down in Bridgend to make sure I, personally, was doing all right.

The Rise of the Welsh Pirates

David Elston's picture

I'm about to show you just how huge 106 votes are. The first Pirate Pioneers in the UK did not always poll in triple figures, this time every candidate did... but before we get into that, let's reflect on what happened at The Count on election night for the first Welsh Pirate election, in Bridgend.

There is no denying there was always a strong undertone in Bridgend that “If we don't vote Labour then the Tories will get in” and many Pirate voters originally expressed the same concern to me. While Labour winning in Bridgend is certainly not a victory for us Pirates, it is undeniably better than having a parachuted in Conservative candidate, which is more than many other constituencies in the UK woke up to on the 8th. The incumbent MP also took the time to speak with me as did her son and I have been invited to talk about the Pirate Party at Bath University.

The Plaid Cymru Candidate had a really good 2,784 (7.1%) Vote, which is a 1.1% increase. James was also a very likeable person and we shared a laugh over how we both had long hair and unavoidably met the odd person that would always say “I can't vote for him, he needs a haircut”.

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