Local Elections 2022: Why Harrogate’s Green Party thinks they have a real chance of succeeding

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Left to right: Green Party candidates Arnold Warneken, Tamsin Worrall and Bill Rigby.

“Every day on the doorstep,” say the Greens, one hears the call for change, the climate change agenda is increasingly preoccupying the public.

In a primary pitch to voters, the Greens say their policies are gaining popularity with the electorate and that they now have a “realistic” chance of being elected councilors in Harrogate District.

A party spokesman said: “People are fed up with local businesses failing by politicians only interested in big business and nepotism, they are fed up with failing local services unable to keep the streets clean and safe hold on, they’re fed up with losing green space to even more housing, just the least affordable.

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“I’m tired of poor mass transit services leaving communities stranded, tired of standing in traffic lines, tired of local communities being let down on a daily basis.

“This May we have a choice to do things better.”

The Greens put forward 13 candidates for the Harrogate district in the May 5 general election and believe more will follow in the future as they elect councillors.

The party said: “When one greener steps in, others quickly follow, while local communities reap the benefits of progressive green policies.

“A Green in the room works for you and doesn’t do what you’re told by party bosses who want to serve their donors.

“A green vote is a vote for progressive politics and real change. She now has a realistic chance of bringing back a green councilman. You can achieve this on May 5th.”

Arnold Warneken, who became the very first Green councilor in northern England when he was elected to Harrogate Borough Council in 1991, is leading the Green Party election campaign.

He is running against the Conservatives’ Richard Musgrave for the Ouseburn division, which is contested only by the two candidates.

Tamsin Worrall, who works as a railway signaller, is the green candidate for Bilton and Nidd Gorge, while scientist Paul Ko Ferrigno contests the neighboring Bilton Grange and New Park division.

Gordon Schallmo, a draftsman at a steel construction company and a volunteer at a nature reserve, is running for the Greens in his second election. He challenges three other candidates for Fairfax and Starbeck.

Leighton Regayre, a climate researcher at the University of Leeds, is running for the Coppice Valley and Duchy division, while Clark Pearson is hoping to become a councilor for Boroughbridge and Claro.

Andrew Rickard, leader of the Harrogate Green Party, running for the Harlow and St Georges Division. He runs a consultancy and is also a scout leader and rugby coach.

Bill Rigby, who became Knaresborough’s first Green mayor in 2016, is competing for seats in Killinghall, Hampsthwaite and Saltergate.

In Ripon, IT worker Robin Burgess is running for the seat of Ure Bank and Spa, while communications officer Hannah Corlett aims to win the nearby Wathvale and Bishop Monkton division.

Gillian Charters, who works as a teacher and volunteer at a mental health charity, is the Green candidate for Oatlands and Pannal.

The Lower Wharfedale, Tockwith-based Spofforth is run by Alex Marsh, who is semi-retired after running an organic grocery business for 35 years.

And the last Green Party candidate is Paul Trewhitt, a chartered marketer running for Washburn and Birstwith.

Those elected will serve on North Yorkshire County Council for a year before moving to the new council in April 2023.

The deadline for registering to vote has passed and those on the electoral roll should have received an absentee ballot or ballot letter within the last two weeks of March.

Polling stations are open from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. on election day.

If you cannot vote in person, you can apply to vote by post or by proxy.

For more information see www.harrogate.gov.uk/voting-elections/county-elections

By Jacob Webster, Reporter for Local Democracy

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