ST JOHN’S has been one of the most secure seats in the Worcestershire County Council Labor Party for some time, with Richard Udall representing the division for decades.
The St John’s mainstay took victory after the division victory and was re-elected with 57% of the vote in 2017 – over 500 votes ahead of the Tories.
He was also last elected to city council to represent St John’s in 2019, securing 630 votes ahead of the Tories, garnering 57% of the vote.
Owen Cleary, the former UKIP Worcester president, now represents the division’s Conservatives.
He is no stranger to elections in St John’s having represented UKIP against Richard Udall in 2019 in the city council election – finishing third and over 730 votes behind Labor – having finished third at Bedwardine in 2015 and having twice failed at Warndon to secure a seat. to the municipal council.
St John’s has remained firmly loyal to the Labor Party for years and although the Tories remain the closest challenger to the Labor Party and do well in the surrounding neighborhoods – especially Bedwardine in the city and council elections as well as St Clement and the Riverside division of the county council – nothing more than another Labor Party victory would come as a shock.
It’s a five-way battle in St John’s for a spot at County Hall with Peter Jackson for the Liberal Democrats and Heather McNeillis-Wilson for the Green Party.
Mark Davies is also standing in St John’s for the Labor and Socialist Coalition.
Empty shops and the redevelopment of the High Street, green spaces and public transport, traffic jams inside and outside the city, the lack of a completed ring road and the ‘village in the city ” being right on the doorstep of the expansion of the University of Worcester, the increase in student housing and multiple occupancy houses (HMOs) remain major issues.
OWEN CLEARY (CONSERVATIVE)
“St John’s has this real community feeling about it and, as a county councilor, I would do my best to protect and enhance its unique reputation as a town within the city.
“The area suffers from a number of issues including congestion, parking issues, litter and dog damage.
“If I were elected, I would look to find ways to solve all of these problems by working positively with the community and with the city council.
“I believe the region could do with someone who can offer a new perspective and a new approach and I’m ready to offer that.
“As a curator, I would also work to keep your municipal tax bill as low as possible and work to ensure that the council always offers great value for money.
PETER JACKSON (LIB DEM)
“Peter has lived on the west side of Worcester for over 35 years. He is director and co-owner of a conference and incentive agency.
“Peter’s goal is to build sustainable communities that are safe for residents to live, work and play. He wants to work with everyone who has a stake in the future of the city to make decisions that benefit everyone. Building homes for families, not executive housing banks, to make sure we have the schools, GP offices, and recreation facilities we need for all residents. Peter’s priorities are to listen to and understand the changing needs of the population, to keep roads safe, to reduce congestion and improve public transport, to put sustainability at the heart of everything and to improve life chances for all residents through high quality and lifelong education and training.
HEATHER MCNEILLIS-WILSON (GREEN)
“I have lived in Worcestershire for nine years and moved to Worcester City in 2018.
“I have four children aged four to eleven who go to school in St Johns.
As a non-driver, I regularly use the walking routes around our city and support the promotion of improving the city’s sidewalks and cycle paths.
“We also need to see improvements in public transport that will give people more choice in how they move around the city, while reducing pollution.
“I support initiatives aimed at improving our outdoor spaces, planting more trees and making spaces more usable.
“This will help improve the mental and physical well-being of our residents.”
RICHARD UDALL (WORK)
“St John’s is my home, that’s where I was born; this is where my family has lived for generations. This is where I work, rest and play. Of course, I want the best for St John’s and its people.
“We need investments in new jobs, opportunities and infrastructure. We need better facilities for pedestrians and cyclists. We need improved parks, playgrounds and recreation areas, we need to bring the fun back to St John’s. I sponsored Dines Green FC and Dines Green Dance; Got a new Meco Memorial Park and will bring Didi Rugby and Basketball to the area.
“We also need to tackle serious issues, such as long waiting lists for housing, litter, anti-social behavior and traffic jams. We need to complete the orbital road with a new road bridge north of the city. We need to invest in new facilities, a local pub and post office for Dines Green and new specialty and interesting stores for St John’s.
“I want to continue to see a strong and vibrant local community.”