WITH environmental concerns at the top of the news agenda, the Green Party is hoping to make waves on May 2.

The party is fielding 18 candidates across Cheshire West, and it is hoping to keep up the party’s success in the north west, having made gains in Trafford, Knowsley and Burnley last year.

“One of the main hopes is to expand democracy,” said Paul Bowers, Helsby candidate and spokesman for Cheshire West Green Party.

“We have got two parties on CWAC who have dominated the council for so long – having a more independent voice in there would really shake things up.

“There is a disaffection with the two main parties everywhere we are campaigning.”

The party is hoping to woo voters with a pledge to provide more integrated public transport – including better bus links for rail passengers hoping to take advantage of the new Halton Curve between Chester and Liverpool.

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Green candidates are also firm in their opposition to fracking and HS2, which could both hit Cheshire in the years to come.

“We are all for investment in better public transport but HS2 is simply a vanity project,” Paul added.

“We will be making sure that climate change is at the forefront of any policy decisions we have influence over.

“I think we are seeing a sea-change in people’s mindsets on the environment and it has to be the case. We are on the brink of something very dangerous.”

All eyes will be on which way the electorate votes on Thursday, May 2, with Labour currently having 38 members to the Conservatives’ 35, while there are two independent members.

Labour and the Tories are putting candidates forward in every CWAC ward – while a raft of independent, Liberal Democrat and Green Party candidates are also hoping to shake-up the local authority.

The election will also be the first since CWAC’s electoral wards were changed, which could also play a part in changing the council’s make-up.

There will be five fewer councillors – 70 down from 75 – and 45 wards in total, with all but three having changed from the current wards, and one being removed.

For more information visit cheshirewestandchester.gov.uk/election2019

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