I don’t often write on national topics on this blog. I don’t often write on anything as dull sounding as the House of Commons Political and Constitutional Reform Select Committee. But this quiet committee, which is pretty much ignored by the media, is gradually compiling a portfolio of common sense reforms.
This week, the committee published a report on voter engagement. With the exception of the Scottish Referendum, turnout at elections has been falling for years. People are disillusioned, so much so that Russell Brand speaks for many of them, especially the young.
Continue reading “Should sixteen year olds vote? Please tell parliament “Yes””
Shropshire Council is consulting on future polling stations, but it has already made the decision to move the Ludlow North polling station out of the town library.
The problem is that Shropshire Council has moved staff from Stone House into the former exhibition space at the Library. A decision was made in February that the Library is no longer suitable for voting. It seems that council staff are planning to move the polling station to the Bishop Mascall Centre on Lower Galdeford.
I am unconvinced that Bishop Mascall will be a suitable station for Ludlow North. The Library is central and has good parking. It is easily accessible by bus and on foot.
The Bishop Mascall is on one edge of the Ludlow North division. It has a limited 722 bus service. It has good car parking but is steeply downhill from the town centre which is far from ideal for pedestrians.
I think turnout will drop if Bishop Mascall becomes the central polling station for Ludlow North.
A better location might be the Women’s Centre or Oscars at the Assembly Rooms, though neither has ideal parking during the day.
Shropshire Council is conducting a review of polling districts and polling places, as it is required to do after every main election. Comments should be made by 4 August.
As always, let me know your views.
Ludlow North (shaded): current and suggested polling stations
Update 29 August. It looks likely that the central polling station for Ludlow North will be at the Feathers Hotel. The town council has been asked to comment by 4 September. I am in full agreement with the change, though I would have preferred to have kept the polling station at the Library.