Tomorrow, Beckenham residents living in the Kelsey and Eden Park ward will be casting their votes in the by-election which was called following the recent resignation of Conservative councillor Dave Wibberley.
News in Beckenham meets the candidates vying for your vote…
Paul Enock – Green Party
1) Tell us a bit about yourself?
My name is Paul Enock and I have lived in the borough of Bromley since 1964. I was brought up in this borough and went to school here. However, I have spent much of my working life in Italy and in Germany, where I set up and managed a small company for ten years. I joined the local Green Party in 2012 when I returned to Bromley to care for my mother during her final years. I am currently working freelance as a translator – a profession I have worked in for the past twenty-five years.
2) Why do you want to be a councillor in Kelsey and Eden Park?
This is one of the most pleasant wards in the borough – potentially one of the most pleasant in Greater London – offering its residents a great quality of life that is eminently worth treasuring and fighting for.
The local and immediate threats are the depredations of recent Tory cuts to council funding, with a continual reduction in the level of maintenance of our local infrastructure and the loss of services such as public toilets, libraries and green spaces. There are also related incursions of overdevelopment which prioritise the interests of private speculation over proper local planning.
Bromley Green Party wants to see more locally based business that maintain a strong web of community resilience, so that our area offers a full range of facilities for every stage of life. We are opposed, for example, to the development of the Chinese Roundabout site by a large non-local corporation.
As a councillor in Kelsey and Eden Park, my mission would be to influence and initiate council policies to address the global and local threats to local life quality.
3) What are the issues facing the area that you wish to address?
The problem that individuals in this country have when they want to address the big threats to our environment is that their ability to make the right choices in their lives is limited by the facilities available.
For example, families in this ward who want to encourage their children to walk or cycle to school cannot feel free to do so without properly designed footways and cycle paths that segregate vulnerable road users from motorised traffic.
Or families who want to reduce the amount of plastic waste they add to the environment are discouraged when they learn how few of the plastic containers they put in their recycling bins actually get recycled, and the absence of local deposit and return schemes.
4) Why should people vote for you?
The presence even of a single Green Party member on a council can have a great impact on the direction of legislation. It will also install in the council chamber a voice that is constantly ready to call out acts of environmental vandalism. Locally, I would be keen to work with organisations like Liveable Bromley, and to link up with the excellent work of Caroline Russell in Islington.