Thursday, 12 April 2012

It`s a family affair as Tameside Labour prepare to fight local elections!

A third of Tameside councillor's are up for election this year as voters go to the polls on May 3rd.

Although Tameside Labour have led and dominated the council for the last 30 years, and are standing a candidate in each ward, the Lib Dems (who cannot even retain their deposit nowadays when fighting by-elections), are not standing any candidates in the borough's 19 wards. Last year they also failed to stand any candidates in the local Tameside elections. In contrast, the Green Party are fielding a candidate in each ward as are the Conservatives.

In Droylsden East and Hyde Newton, the British National Party (BNP) are standing two candidates. Although in 2009, the BNP received the third highest number of votes in Greater Manchester from Tameside voters during the European elections, their share of the vote in Tameside has been declining over the last five years. In Dukinfield, Roy West who in past elections stood as the BNP candidate, is now standing as an independent against the sitting Labour councillor, Brian Wilde. Another defector from the BNP, is John Shorrock, who is standing as the candidate for the English Democrats in Dukinfield/Stalybridge.

As we reported in January, Dorothy Cartwright a former Conservative councillor, was pushed out of her seat in the Dukinfield/Stalybridge ward to make way for Claire Reynolds, the wife of Jonny Reynolds, the MP for Stalybridge and Hyde. As a consolation prize, Cartwright, was nominated to fight the seat of Stalybridge South ward for Labour which is currently held by the Conservatives.

Labour Party politics in Tameside is gradually becoming a family affair. The leader of the council, Kieran Quinn, is married to Susan Quinn, the Mayor of Tameside who is also a Droylsden councillor like her husband. Other married couples on the council, include Barrie and Anne Holland and Jacqueline and Dawson Lane. In the forthcoming May elections, Janet Jackson has been nominated by Labour to fight the Stalybridge North ward. She is the partner of councillor Jim Fitzpatrick whose brother Philip, is also a Labour councillor. In nearby Audenshaw, the former Mayor Jean Brazil, was given a nudge using sharp elbows to make way for Teresa Smith, the wife of Labour councillor Mike Smith.

Some people might see this sort of thing (trying to get your Missus on the council), as nepotism or cronyism of the worst kind, but jobs are hard to get in Tameside these days. A recent report in the Manchester Evening News, claimed that Tameside was one of the toughest places in the country to find a job. Seemingly, Tameside is one of the 10 worst council areas in the north of England for employment prospects. Even the 'Experians' poverty map of England, ranks Tameside 55 out of 326 local authorities for the biggest risk of poverty and ranks it 78 for child poverty, and 45 for financial exclusion. It seems that if you want a job around here, your best hope lies in getting on the council gravy train.


Liam said...

A good thing to look at is the register of interests at the council offices. Last time I checked, no more than 8 councillors had a full/part time job outside of the council.

It's because their salaries rank far higher than what the average person in Tameside earns in a full time job. It's no surprise that any of them feel the need to seek employment.

Anonymous said...

You forgor Denise Ward Denton Cllr partner David Mc Nally Ashton Cllr. Alison Gwynne Denton Cllr husband Andrew Gwynne Denton & Reddish MP