We want to engender real change in the way that local politics and the Town Council are seen and work. This won’t be just four more years of the same old , same old. We have no party machine pressing down on our necks telling us to conform and how we should think. If we are successful perhaps what we have done will become the norm and the community of Frome will be stronger for it.
Equally we freely admit that we don’t have all of the answers to the problems facing the town. We will however not pretend we do, nor will we be seduced into the macho and destructive world of old style politics. Our greatest legacy may be shaking up a tired system in a time of great change, ensuring that the voice of Frome is heard and listened to. We want to create an atmosphere and a culture within which the town of Frome can express what it wants and needs in a positive and articulate way ……to itself and to the outside world.
It is important that people understand that we are independents; of thought and of one another. We all subscribe to some broad principles but each one of us will make up their own mind on individual matters. So don’t expect over refined statements of intent, don’t look for buttoned up party discipline but do expect vigorous debate and the frequent use of the words, “why?”, and crucially, “If”
So here are six broad principles which all seventeen candidates subscribe to. Beneath each one is a series of more detailed policies, which we have prioritized – in some cases they are firm commitments, in others we recognize that they need more consultation and work with others like the county council or Mendip. They are not set in stone, we want to be as flexible as possible so they will morph and change depending upon the results of intensive consultation.
Click on the links below to view the detail policy area.
3. Town Council
“We will look for ways to strengthen the community in Frome, by supporting local groups and neighbourhood action, encouraging local employment and making sure all groups have a voice.”
Some of the specific areas we will support are:
- Every year over the next 4 years we will focus on one specific group, for example youth or the elderly; analyse the services provided for that group, survey individuals about provision , identify issues and produce with other agencies tangible changes.
- Improve representation and participation for all groups and communities in the town.
- Support inter-generational facilities.
- Assist the youth café and local businesses that provide services for young people
- Hold regular meetings with youth forum and youth council
- Work with local businesses to take advantage of the green economy
“We will work towards a cleaner and greener Frome, looking at where the problems are and seeking new solutions that will have a real impact on the town.”
Some of the ways we will improve our environment will be:
- Return Frome street cleansing to local control whilst also devising alternative ways to keep the town clean.
- Improve the Market Place to make life better and safer for pedestrians, bus users, cyclists and motorists.
- Enhance the river frontage and water quality.
- Plant more trees on public land and car parks.
- Expand the provision of allotments.
- Encourage a plastic bag free town centre.
- Improve town centre air quality.
We want to change the way the council works, to make it better at listening to what people want and to create a ‘can do’ culture, where we will work with other government agencies, as well as investors and community groups, to get things done.”
Some of the ways we will do this:
- Support devolved powers using the new localism bill cannily and smartly to benefit the people of Frome.
- Engage with people by making meetings less formal, more open and more interactive.
- Provide non-meeting opportunities for people to express their views.
- Use the skills of local businesses and of local people to help in the running of Town Council affairs.
- Seek to exert more influence over decisions about the town through advancing articulate and evidence based responses and policies.
- Support businesses creating skilled jobs and apprentice opportunities for local people.
- Providing an articulate, democratic and evidence based voice for Frome.
- Work together with others to benefit the town with humility, honesty, courtesy and integrity.
- Encourage community enterprise by providing information, advice, guidance and grant aiding.
“We will make sure the unique character of Frome is not lost as it grows and develops.”
Some of the ways we will approach the town’s development are:
- Resisting the drift to a clone town through the creation of distinctive policies in a new Neighbourhood Development Plan approved, by local residents through a referendum.
- Bringing more development control decisions back to Frome.
- Making a better feature of the river.
- Campaigning for better quality in urban design.
- Encouraging more green space between developments.
- Encouraging less focus on the car in any design brief for the town.
“We will put sustainability at the heart of everything we do and say. By this we mean that what we do should leave Frome a better place for future generations environmentally, socially and economically.”
Some of the ways we will do this include:
- Returning market regulation to Frome and restoring the twice weekly market to its rightful place quality and size.
- Supporting and lobbying for improved transport options including trains, local bus services, and completing the National Bike Route from Great Elm (the “Missing Link”).
- Supporting both local energy generation and reduced household energy use through information and links to funding opportunities.
ARTS AND MEDIA
“We will make sure that the arts and culture in Frome remain strong, enriching its people and contributing to the local economy.”
Some of the ways we will do this include:
- Ensuring funding arrangements for the Cheese and Grain are sufficient in the short term to allow for long term viability.
- Encouraging networking and sharing resources.
- Liaising with local businesses to encourage sponsorship and partnership.
- Encouraging radical thinking about the long term and sustainable future of the library.