Image: Green candidate for Macclesfield, James Booth
This article was first published on 6th September 2019
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With politicians in Westminster currently wrangling over whether/when to call a general election, the Green Party in Macclesfield has prepared itself and announced its candidate.
Greens in Macclesfield have chosen campaigner and local resident James Booth to stand in the general election, which may take place within the next few weeks.
James said: “I am standing because I am passionate about the environment and animal welfare. I want a fair society for all. I feel that it is time for me to stand up and make a difference.
“The Green vision is of a more equal society. We want a greener safer future for everyone. This is within our reach and it is affordable.”
Greenbelt and housing
“I want the greenbelt protected. Clearly we should care for the countryside and for its precious wildlife.
“In the Macclesfield and Poynton areas, we are threatened by the development of the green belt and the loss of habitats of many species, some of which are protected or even endangered.
“The current planning structure is not meeting the needs of first time buyers; houses under construction tend to be luxury homes.
“But we do need more homes, these should be good quality, affordable and sited close to public transport.”
James said: “Our National Health Service is good value and has served us well. It needs to be properly funded and the Green Party would put much more money into the service.
“We would keep what is working and review and reshape what is not working. So I say, ‘yes’ to more funding, but ‘no’ to wasted resources.”
Speaking about the proposed HS2 rail project, James said: “In Macclesfield, we are well served with regular direct trains to London, which take only 1 hour 40 minutes.
“Let’s be realistic about the cost and benefit of HS2. There will be little or no real benefit to people who commute from Macclesfield and a strong possibility that the Macclesfield service to London will be at a reduced level once HS2 is up and running.
“The implementation of HS2 will cause devastation to the countryside and many valuable habitats here and in other parts of the country.
“I am totally against HS2.”
The Green Party is campaigning for EU reform and no Brexit. They believe that when the talks with the EU are complete, the British people should be offered a choice with ‘remain in the EU’ offered at the ballot box.
James told us: “Macclesfield is a great place to live or work, but there are some areas in Macclesfield where people are living in real poverty.
“It is absolutely essential that we work to improve the lives and aspirations of these undervalued people. We need to share in the benefits of our great town.
“I have lived in the local area for over 30 years. Professionally, I am a barrister, specialising in representing victims of industrial disease in the workplace.
“I am a trustee of St Michael’s Church in the Marketplace, Macclesfield, as well as being the assistant manager of local amateur football team, St Peter’s.
“I helped to run the youth group at All Saints on Brough Street West, and worked as a volunteer at Cre8 on the Moss Estate.
“I am a member of the Macclesfield churches’ Eco-Group. We campaign on issues such as climate change, and we are working on local green solutions.
I would be honoured to be elected to take us into the future. I can make a real difference to the way we live, which will benefit future generations.”