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Our two Labour Councillors as promised, are holding their first surgery next week.

We elected eight CCs and of course they serve Cripplegate which includes part of the Barbican Estate and some shops and other businesses, as well as our Estate.

As residents of Golden Lane how do you think our Common Councillors can best meet us?
Should our Sue Pearson hold her own surgeries? Should the Labour Party Councillors hold their own surgeries, or should they all work together on our behalf and hold surgeries together so that they all get the same information? Also might some folk need a private one to one with the Councillors of their choice and tell them whether they are happy to share their matter with all or selected CCs?

These are just thoughts that have crossed my mind and I have no answers but wonder what others think. I don't think we have ever been so engaged in voting for our CC representatives before, and it seems sensible to engage with how they meet us, work with us rather than voting then leaving it all up to them to find their way.

Hopefully a discussion about this will help residents keep up their engagenent and help Councillors too.

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Personally I would like to see all elected Cripplegate councillors working together for the good of both residents and businesses within the ward that they have been elected to serve.

The past shows that certain councillors have never held surgeries, and have no attention in doing so, engagement with the residential voter is beyond them, hence the seismic changes that we have witnessed, which hopefully will mean that residential voter’s concerns are heard and addressed.

Only two councillors have been brave enough to state their political affiliations. For other councillors to say that they have no political party bias is wrong, past policy voting decisions clearly show a bias towards the right wing within Cripplegate and the wider City.

I would prefer if all Cripplegate councillors were to hold an open combined quarterly meeting within the Guildhall, allowing all voters to question them, and hold them to account. The meetings should be broadcast live on Skype, allowing those unable to attend in person to watch and question. If any elected councillor fails to turn up to these open meetings, you can then make your own judgement as to their suitability at the next Common Council/Alderperson election.

If any political party, or individual councillor wish to hold individual surgeries, then they should, voters should have the option to talk to them in private too. I believe it is essential for the City of London Corporation to allocate suitable meeting rooms in which the elected councillors may hold their surgeries.

I have booked the community centre for regular surgeries after Easter but I was hoping that there would be the opportunity to all work together. I think that we would have a stronger voice ... and could develop a strategic approach to the complex issues we face. I have been discussing this with John Tomlinson and hopefully we will be able to get something set up before too long. I'm developing my website and hope to do a regular blog of what I've been doing and any progress made. At the end of April I hope to be confirmed as a member of the Planning and Transportation Committee and Community and Children's Services committee. I plan to see if I can be elected to the Health and Wellbeing board and Open Spaces and City Gardens but there are not many places and I won't know until the Common Council meeting at the end of the month.

I very much agree with Sue that all common councillors representing Cripplegate should work together and I'm happy to do so, I'm aware that most councillors have not held surgeries in the past and that we are breaking new ground.

Will Pimlott and I made a specific commitment to the electors to hold advice surgeries. I've already been contacted by some of the residents asking when these will be. I thought we should have a surgery as soon as possible (3 weeks after the election) to give residents a chance to speak to us. We need to keep our promises.

I would be very willing to discuss with other councillors some joint arrangements for the future. I would certainly support joint meetings where the electorate can question all of us.

Perhaps a Questions for Councillors section on this website? Allowing residents to get to know their elected representatives is very important. For too long there has been a communication gap, and that can be closed both with face-to-face meetings and online correspondence. The key is to get the talking started.

I think early evening surgeries in the Community Centre is a good idea; that way people who are keen to get things done will make the effort to attend. Those who can't - for whatever reason - can get questions asked by proxy.

Using the website instead / as well as the above would result in precious time being lost to those with verbal diarrhea.

It would be very helpful to have the surgeries scheduled perhaps six months in advance, or even a year if possible.

 

Just a quick comment from your Alderman. 

Firstly, all of your elected Ward representatives are discussing the logistics and practicalities of, in particular, Ward surgeries.

Historically, your representatives have held separate public meetings focussing on Golden Lane and Barbican residents in addition to the very formal annual Wardmotes held in March each year for the whole Ward.

Surgeries are different to public meetings in the sense that they are opportunities for advice to residents on particular issues that affect them in particular - certainly that is the model by which MPs surgeries typically work. However, there are no "rules" and we can devise whatever system you prefer. I can see pros and cons to both surgeries and public meetings and no reason not to run both during each year. So, I think this is what will happen. 

I do think it is important to make clear (certainly as far as I am concerned and I am sure for the others too) that there is no need to wait for a public meeting or a surgery if you want to contact your elected representatives. We are here to respond to you when you need it, and are no more than a keyboard away (or a stamp for those who do not use email). This is not just empty talk - anyone contacting me will usually get a substantive response within 24 hours, possibly longer if I need to investigate and involve other people in a response, but not just a pro-forma "thank you for your email and I will reply in due course".

In case anyone wants to test what I say, my email address is david2graves@aol.co.uk. I also have a Corporation email address at david.graves@cityoflondon.gov.uk if you prefer an "official" email address.  

How interesting.  On all the occasions I contacted my councillor, all he did, instead of supporting me, was to forward my emails to certain people in the City Corporation, without asking me first.  And, on one last occasion, when the Chair of GLERA copied him in on an email about an urgent case I had, there was no reply.  Maybe that's why he was not re elected at the last Councillor elections.  We need councillors who actually are there to serve the residents, not the City! 

David Graves (your Alderman) said:

Just a quick comment from your Alderman. 

Firstly, all of your elected Ward representatives are discussing the logistics and practicalities of, in particular, Ward surgeries.

Historically, your representatives have held separate public meetings focussing on Golden Lane and Barbican residents in addition to the very formal annual Wardmotes held in March each year for the whole Ward.

Surgeries are different to public meetings in the sense that they are opportunities for advice to residents on particular issues that affect them in particular - certainly that is the model by which MPs surgeries typically work. However, there are no "rules" and we can devise whatever system you prefer. I can see pros and cons to both surgeries and public meetings and no reason not to run both during each year. So, I think this is what will happen. 

I do think it is important to make clear (certainly as far as I am concerned and I am sure for the others too) that there is no need to wait for a public meeting or a surgery if you want to contact your elected representatives. We are here to respond to you when you need it, and are no more than a keyboard away (or a stamp for those who do not use email). This is not just empty talk - anyone contacting me will usually get a substantive response within 24 hours, possibly longer if I need to investigate and involve other people in a response, but not just a pro-forma "thank you for your email and I will reply in due course".

In case anyone wants to test what I say, my email address is david2graves@aol.co.uk. I also have a Corporation email address at david.graves@cityoflondon.gov.uk if you prefer an "official" email address.  

Is Sue Pearson the only Golden Lane resident?

I assume it is up to each Common Councillor to decide on how each wants to run surgeries.  Hopefully they will each find a way of notifying all the electorate of their plans.  Email addresses would be very useful.

Good to see our Alderman providing his email addresses.  Hopefully this will act as an example to our CCs.  

"In case anyone wants to test what I say, my email address is david2graves@aol.co.uk. I also have a Corporation email address at david.graves@cityoflondon.gov.uk if you prefer an "official" email address.  "

Hi Iain.  Yes, she is.  But, it is certainly good to see that she, and the 2 Labour councillors are running surgeries.  I attended the first one held by them and it appeared to be well attended.  It makes such a refreshing change to actually be able to have such contact with councillors. 


Thanks to the Alderman for making his contact details available to you all.

The residents of Golden Lane and the Barbican are more than welcome to contact me via email or telephone. We did circulate our addresses and other contact details on all our leaflets that we distributed during the election campaign but I'll repeat them here. 

My address is 48 Andrewes House, Barbican, EC2Y 8AX or you can write to me at the Members' Room, PO Box 270, Guildhall, EC2P 2EJ.

My emails are marydurcan@hotmail.com or mary.durcan@cityoflondon.gov.uk.

My phones are 07966505643 or 07710114244.or 02073746599

We will be holding further Advice Surgeries where you can come and talk to us or I would be happy to meet you in your home if you prefer.

It's important that we know what is concerning you so that we can represent you fully.

With best wishes,

Mary Durcan 

Common Councillor for Cripplegate

Dear Everyone,

Please can I concur with Mary and say that it is crucial that we are easy to contact. I am always here to be contacted.

My email is wpimlott@gmail.com and William.Pimlott@cityoflondon.gov.uk

Mary and I will be holding further surgeries and also will be doorknocking every door in the Golden Lane, block by block, on a rota in the coming period.

More than happy to have my contact details published as they were for the election and on the City's website. For clarity I live at 58 Andrewes House, EC2Y 8AX - 020 7638 8490 or my mobile 07717 421 645. I don't often answer the mobile as it is generally on silent whilst I am at meetings and sometimes forget to turn it on. However, I always respond to messages. Happy to attend ward surgeries or to visit residents that cannot attend, as I always have.

Vivienne Littlechild JP
Member for Cripplegate

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