June Committee Meeting

SUMMARY  of the Sutton Greens Meeting 
14 June 2018.
 Held at Hill Allotments Social Club

Election Appraisal:
  A disappointing result, Conservatives won 80 % seats.
“Sutton electorate to blame.” says Green spokesperson!
Green candidate votes:–
Walmley & Minworth ward: B Auton (Green Party) – 800 votes: One Green Party leaflet was delivered to each household in the ward of the whole ward; D. O’Hagan of Independents for Sutton (IfS) gained 1096 votes: he delivered 3 leaflets to every household.
Both had contributed to the cross-party opposition campaign in the press.
Vesey ward: C Marriott (Green Party) – 1493 votes: He attended and spoke at the hustings in a generally strong Labour ward. He too had participated in cross- party work, advertising and inclusion in election publicity. This may have persuaded many voters that IfS, Greens and Lib’Dems were Labour cronies.
Ironically the only non-Tory party to make gains in SC was Labour. The high Green vote in Vesey was clearly due to it being the strongest ‘Alliance’ ward, though the Independents for Sutton (IfS) group lost all the seats it once held.
A Proportional Representation system of vote counting would only have given Tories approx’ 60% seats on Town Council.
It’s concluded that Green Party stance at time of the “Independence  for Sutton” vote was correct – we should have fought for a PR system before voting for independence.

Results:
Town Council election:
The proportion of votes was:- 61.72% Con; 20.05% Lab; 9.85% IfS; 4.33% Green; 4.05% Lib Dem.  Green candidates stood in three wares. The Party is now up one place as fourth party.
Turnout:
Reddicap, 24.06%: Vesey 38.83%: Mere Green 36%: Roughley 31.69%: Trinity 31.5%: Walmley 29.36%: Four Oaks 33.69% .
Birmingham City Council election.
The Green Party fielded candidates in 7 of the  8 and polled 3.35% of the votes.
Conclusion:
1. Leaflets are of little measurable benefit. More use of social media needed to attract younger activists & voters. Compare this with Julian Pritchard’s election success in Druids Heath, Birmingham: this was a Green Party target ward where a concerted long-term Green effort was made including delivery of a regular Green Party  Newsletter to every household.
2. To provide infomration to help in targeting future Green campaigning our own counting agents attended the official count of votes after the election. They kep a tally of Green votes as the ballot papers arrived from the individual polling stations of the Walmley and Minworth ward. The figures gave inaccurate total percentages but provided  useful information about the voting patterns in different parts of the ward.
3. The method of vote sampling has been written up as a guide for future practical use at future elections.
It was agreed that C Marriott will produce and distribute the local members’ Newsletter and that P Cooke shall format it onto a Green Party template.

Sutton Greens’ Website.
This was was agreed as being a priority need: a Home page and menu are to be designed. P Cooke is  to provide this using WordPress.
M Okole (Bham Green Party) will be requested to contact all SC members encouraging them to sign up for our local bulletins.
Contacts with other groups for website are being compiled to establish a reference and resource bank with a listing of what is going on and where.

Other notes.
Next meeting 17 July 2018 at Hill Allotments 7.30pm
Sutton grass area mowing: Noted that some green areas in P Cooke’s vicinity are being left un-mown. He has been told he can
 wild-flower seed it. P Cooke will contact S Lyne to find out more about availability of wild-flower seed supplies.
Air pollution: PC is to contact New Hall sampling station to obtain up to date figures and follow up S Lyne’s request for a site visit.
CM received letter from A Mitchell re EU palm oil.
The meeting closed at 9:15 pm

AOB:You may already have received the Notes / Minutes of the SC GP Meeting of 14th June. As a result, there has been something of a flurry of emails which the Newsletter Team has respectfully tried to take account of here. As stated, the next meeting will be on Tuesday 17th July 7-30pm at Hill Allotment Social Club. (Enquiries to starpsykeATtalktalkDOTnet )   Agenda to follow.

Local members will recall the superb response from supporters, teens to octogenarians, to the appeal to tramp the letter boxes of Walmley & Minworth ward. As a party committed to workers’ rights, we are proud to announce that thanks to the 100% use by door-to-door leaflet volunteers of the standardised Sutton Group, recycled,“butter-pat” design posting device, 1) zero injuries to fingers were sustained from letter box mechanisms & from guard-dog attacks; 2) No householders were alienated by partially visible leaflets still protruding. 3) 87% landed “candidate-face-up” inside.

Despite election result disappointment expressed at our meeting some days ago, as a publicity exercise and supporter motivation action, the Newsletter team holds that 6,000 deliveries well initialises further groundwork. Other local political parties present at the election count revealed involuntary surprise at certain higher figures we did achieve. Let us not forget that!

Nor let us forget that, three days before the May election, Alan Clawley, long- standing B’ham Green Party activist died in his early seventies after a battle with cancer. He was a long-standing Green in both senses: he had been a member for a number of decades; he had also regularly stood as a Green candidate including in the May election through which he did not live to see the Party’s first Green councillor elected in Birmingham, a goal for which he had worked. Sutton Green Group members attended the funeral and are in touch with Hazel. Though dwelling in Small Heath, Alan had many times tramped the streets of Sutton helping to collect signatures for the nomination of our candidates and been our joint election agent. His detailed obituary in various newspapers has been well deserved.

On these efforts must we build. The agenda paper, “May 2018 ONWARDS” is already being acted on at the levels of up-skilling, campaigning range and integrating out-reach activities.

So! We again say:-
“Optimism of the Will, pessimism of the Intellect!”
(Grazie, Signor Gramsci!)

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