Candidates to be quizzed by voters

This Is Wiltshire: Chris Barry, the chairman of Better Swindon Chris Barry, the chairman of Better Swindon

COUNCIL election candidates will experience a role reversal while canvassing for votes as they’ll be probed by pressure group Better Swindon.

The volunteer group formed last year is campaigning to improve the reputation of politics in the town and has six key principles, regarding transparency and openness, which it wants to see Swindon Council adopt.

Those in the movement plan to ask prospective candidates when they knock on their doors in preparation for the May 22 elections whether they would back the aims.

Chris Barry, the Better Swindon chairman, said: “We want people to keep the paper with our principles near their doors and when the candidates come knocking on their doors, asking for support, challenge them to see whether they back the principles and if not, why not.

“We spent a lot of time discussing these aims for Swindon and feel they are practical and pragmatic for the future.”

Better Swindon did consider putting forward candidates for the elections but the group wants to work with the council as a separate body rather than changing it from within.

So far, the group has already helped to develop a new approach for the council’s public consultations and members are in talks about ways the authority’s standards process and communications can be improved.

Chris said: “If a councillor tells us they would sign up to our principles and then goes against them we would look to hold them to account.

“We could do this by emailing them or standing up during public debate at council meetings and explaining how they’ve gone against their promise.”

Better Swindon, which has received backing from Lord Joel Joffe, who lives in Liddington, held a meeting on Wednesday, at the Croft Sports Centre, attended by about 40 people, where they raised awareness of their intentions.

Chris said: “The feedback we’ve received has been overwhelmingly positive.

“We had people really engaging with it and saying it was enjoyable and informative.

“We were worried people might think we are being too aggressive or militant, as that isn’t what we are about, but I think people understood what we stand for.

“We are looking to welcome more people to Better Swindon and get involved to work with the council and bring change to Swindon.

“We need any help we can get as we can’t do this just on our own.

“If people want to make a change then I would ask them to get involved.”

Comments (18)

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9:14am Fri 2 May 14

stratton man says...

Like the idea but without independent verification who can prove what was said or agreed in a doorstep conversation.It was hard enough to get the former Mayor to admit what he said in front of a room full of witnesses.
Like the idea but without independent verification who can prove what was said or agreed in a doorstep conversation.It was hard enough to get the former Mayor to admit what he said in front of a room full of witnesses. stratton man
  • Score: -1

12:14pm Fri 2 May 14

Davey Gravey says...

Will CHANNELx be taking part?
Will CHANNELx be taking part? Davey Gravey
  • Score: 0

12:59pm Fri 2 May 14

ChannelX says...

Davey Gravey wrote:
Will CHANNELx be taking part?
Why would I be?

Are you?
[quote][p][bold]Davey Gravey[/bold] wrote: Will CHANNELx be taking part?[/p][/quote]Why would I be? Are you? ChannelX
  • Score: 3

1:09pm Fri 2 May 14

Davey Gravey says...

ChannelX wrote:
Davey Gravey wrote:
Will CHANNELx be taking part?
Why would I be?

Are you?
Allegedly you are a councilor so wondered if you would be one taking part.
I'm not so won't be.
[quote][p][bold]ChannelX[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Davey Gravey[/bold] wrote: Will CHANNELx be taking part?[/p][/quote]Why would I be? Are you?[/p][/quote]Allegedly you are a councilor so wondered if you would be one taking part. I'm not so won't be. Davey Gravey
  • Score: -1

2:00pm Fri 2 May 14

ChannelX says...

I've been told by somebody that they think that you are a Labour councillor.

I have no reason to disbelieve them, and obviously you're not going to admit to being one.

So, I'll ask again, will you be taking part, councillor?
I've been told by somebody that they think that you are a Labour councillor. I have no reason to disbelieve them, and obviously you're not going to admit to being one. So, I'll ask again, will you be taking part, councillor? ChannelX
  • Score: 1

2:10pm Fri 2 May 14

Davey Gravey says...

Who am I supposed to be then?
Of course you know I am not a councilor. People have seemed very sure you are one though. They have named you many times.
Who am I supposed to be then? Of course you know I am not a councilor. People have seemed very sure you are one though. They have named you many times. Davey Gravey
  • Score: 0

2:35pm Fri 2 May 14

ChannelX says...

Davey Gravey wrote:
Who am I supposed to be then?
Of course you know I am not a councilor. People have seemed very sure you are one though. They have named you many times.
Actually, no. You are wrong.

ONE person 'named' me. Then you and a couple of others decided to believe them - quite why you believed the rantings of a madman, I really have no idea.

It's true that several of you have 'named' me many, many times now. Not really sure what that proves.

Still, it's certainly been highly amusing.

Back to the question: will you be taking part, councillor?
[quote][p][bold]Davey Gravey[/bold] wrote: Who am I supposed to be then? Of course you know I am not a councilor. People have seemed very sure you are one though. They have named you many times.[/p][/quote]Actually, no. You are wrong. ONE person 'named' me. Then you and a couple of others decided to believe them - quite why you believed the rantings of a madman, I really have no idea. It's true that several of you have 'named' me many, many times now. Not really sure what that proves. Still, it's certainly been highly amusing. Back to the question: will you be taking part, councillor? ChannelX
  • Score: 0

2:56pm Fri 2 May 14

Davey Gravey says...

An instant +3 thumbs. Good work. I'm not a councilor and have answered that question above.
An instant +3 thumbs. Good work. I'm not a councilor and have answered that question above. Davey Gravey
  • Score: -1

4:10pm Fri 2 May 14

ChannelX says...

Davey Gravey wrote:
An instant +3 thumbs. Good work. I'm not a councilor and have answered that question above.
Oh, but people are saying that you're a councillor. Based on your logic, I guess you must be.
[quote][p][bold]Davey Gravey[/bold] wrote: An instant +3 thumbs. Good work. I'm not a councilor and have answered that question above.[/p][/quote]Oh, but people are saying that you're a councillor. Based on your logic, I guess you must be. ChannelX
  • Score: 2

4:14pm Fri 2 May 14

Davey Gravey says...

ChannelX wrote:
Davey Gravey wrote:
An instant +3 thumbs. Good work. I'm not a councilor and have answered that question above.
Oh, but people are saying that you're a councillor. Based on your logic, I guess you must be.
People are not saying I'm a councilor at all.
People have said you are though.
[quote][p][bold]ChannelX[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Davey Gravey[/bold] wrote: An instant +3 thumbs. Good work. I'm not a councilor and have answered that question above.[/p][/quote]Oh, but people are saying that you're a councillor. Based on your logic, I guess you must be.[/p][/quote]People are not saying I'm a councilor at all. People have said you are though. Davey Gravey
  • Score: -1

4:17pm Fri 2 May 14

ChannelX says...

Davey Gravey wrote:
ChannelX wrote:
Davey Gravey wrote:
An instant +3 thumbs. Good work. I'm not a councilor and have answered that question above.
Oh, but people are saying that you're a councillor. Based on your logic, I guess you must be.
People are not saying I'm a councilor at all.
People have said you are though.
Yes, one person did say that he thought I was a councillor. You, rather stupidly, believed him and repeated the claim. Others, equally stupid, then followed the pair of you.

It's absolutely hysterical what some idiots will believe.
[quote][p][bold]Davey Gravey[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]ChannelX[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Davey Gravey[/bold] wrote: An instant +3 thumbs. Good work. I'm not a councilor and have answered that question above.[/p][/quote]Oh, but people are saying that you're a councillor. Based on your logic, I guess you must be.[/p][/quote]People are not saying I'm a councilor at all. People have said you are though.[/p][/quote]Yes, one person did say that he thought I was a councillor. You, rather stupidly, believed him and repeated the claim. Others, equally stupid, then followed the pair of you. It's absolutely hysterical what some idiots will believe. ChannelX
  • Score: 1

4:46pm Fri 2 May 14

Davey Gravey says...

ChannelX wrote:
Davey Gravey wrote:
ChannelX wrote:
Davey Gravey wrote:
An instant +3 thumbs. Good work. I'm not a councilor and have answered that question above.
Oh, but people are saying that you're a councillor. Based on your logic, I guess you must be.
People are not saying I'm a councilor at all.
People have said you are though.
Yes, one person did say that he thought I was a councillor. You, rather stupidly, believed him and repeated the claim. Others, equally stupid, then followed the pair of you.

It's absolutely hysterical what some idiots will believe.
Ok then. If you are not a Tory councilor then you are a fanatic who rounds on anyone who dares to criticise them.
To everyone but yourself your behaviour in this site is bizarre to say the least.
[quote][p][bold]ChannelX[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Davey Gravey[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]ChannelX[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Davey Gravey[/bold] wrote: An instant +3 thumbs. Good work. I'm not a councilor and have answered that question above.[/p][/quote]Oh, but people are saying that you're a councillor. Based on your logic, I guess you must be.[/p][/quote]People are not saying I'm a councilor at all. People have said you are though.[/p][/quote]Yes, one person did say that he thought I was a councillor. You, rather stupidly, believed him and repeated the claim. Others, equally stupid, then followed the pair of you. It's absolutely hysterical what some idiots will believe.[/p][/quote]Ok then. If you are not a Tory councilor then you are a fanatic who rounds on anyone who dares to criticise them. To everyone but yourself your behaviour in this site is bizarre to say the least. Davey Gravey
  • Score: -2

7:53pm Fri 2 May 14

stratton man says...

Time to see the Doc again channelx.Your medication clearly needs increasing.Even by the standards of this site you are weird.
Time to see the Doc again channelx.Your medication clearly needs increasing.Even by the standards of this site you are weird. stratton man
  • Score: -1

10:54pm Fri 2 May 14

Richard Symonds says...

What has all the above comments got to do with Better Swindon?

Anyone worth their salt standing for Council Should subscribe to their principles but the trouble is that once elected Councillors can do what they want including ignoring their electorate with impunity as Channel 9 knows only too well!

Promises to be an interesting election, but we end up with the Council we deserve so get out there and vote please and then and only then can you complain about the result. If you fail to register a vote then you give up the right to complain about it!
What has all the above comments got to do with Better Swindon? Anyone worth their salt standing for Council Should subscribe to their principles but the trouble is that once elected Councillors can do what they want including ignoring their electorate with impunity as Channel 9 knows only too well! Promises to be an interesting election, but we end up with the Council we deserve so get out there and vote please and then and only then can you complain about the result. If you fail to register a vote then you give up the right to complain about it! Richard Symonds
  • Score: -2

10:31am Sat 3 May 14

ChannelX says...

Davey Gravey wrote:
ChannelX wrote:
Davey Gravey wrote:
ChannelX wrote:
Davey Gravey wrote:
An instant +3 thumbs. Good work. I'm not a councilor and have answered that question above.
Oh, but people are saying that you're a councillor. Based on your logic, I guess you must be.
People are not saying I'm a councilor at all.
People have said you are though.
Yes, one person did say that he thought I was a councillor. You, rather stupidly, believed him and repeated the claim. Others, equally stupid, then followed the pair of you.

It's absolutely hysterical what some idiots will believe.
Ok then. If you are not a Tory councilor then you are a fanatic who rounds on anyone who dares to criticise them.
To everyone but yourself your behaviour in this site is bizarre to say the least.
You think you come across as sane?
[quote][p][bold]Davey Gravey[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]ChannelX[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Davey Gravey[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]ChannelX[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Davey Gravey[/bold] wrote: An instant +3 thumbs. Good work. I'm not a councilor and have answered that question above.[/p][/quote]Oh, but people are saying that you're a councillor. Based on your logic, I guess you must be.[/p][/quote]People are not saying I'm a councilor at all. People have said you are though.[/p][/quote]Yes, one person did say that he thought I was a councillor. You, rather stupidly, believed him and repeated the claim. Others, equally stupid, then followed the pair of you. It's absolutely hysterical what some idiots will believe.[/p][/quote]Ok then. If you are not a Tory councilor then you are a fanatic who rounds on anyone who dares to criticise them. To everyone but yourself your behaviour in this site is bizarre to say the least.[/p][/quote]You think you come across as sane? ChannelX
  • Score: 1

10:35am Sat 3 May 14

ChannelX says...

stratton man wrote:
Time to see the Doc again channelx.Your medication clearly needs increasing.Even by the standards of this site you are weird.
You're the one who got taken in by, and believed, an nutter. No wonder you're clearly embarrassed and have to resort to childish insults.

Typical leftie.
[quote][p][bold]stratton man[/bold] wrote: Time to see the Doc again channelx.Your medication clearly needs increasing.Even by the standards of this site you are weird.[/p][/quote]You're the one who got taken in by, and believed, an nutter. No wonder you're clearly embarrassed and have to resort to childish insults. Typical leftie. ChannelX
  • Score: 0

11:36am Sat 3 May 14

Davey Gravey says...

Someones had a thumb fiddle again.
Someones had a thumb fiddle again. Davey Gravey
  • Score: -1

4:03pm Sat 3 May 14

house on the hill says...

Well that pretty much sums up why i hate politics and anyone or anything to do with it. Arrogant, self opinionated, mouth pieces who arent interested in anyone elses views but their own and ram their narrow views on the world down our throats and just insult anyone who dares to disagrees with with them! Just look around this town, is a fvcking mess because all councillors of all colours couldnt organise a bun fight in a bakery supported by far too many complacent dead wood council staff who are so afraid of their own shadows they cant make a decision to save their lives. We pay around £200million in council tax and the place looks like it should be twinned with Basra and Beiruit! A joke the lot of them!
Well that pretty much sums up why i hate politics and anyone or anything to do with it. Arrogant, self opinionated, mouth pieces who arent interested in anyone elses views but their own and ram their narrow views on the world down our throats and just insult anyone who dares to disagrees with with them! Just look around this town, is a fvcking mess because all councillors of all colours couldnt organise a bun fight in a bakery supported by far too many complacent dead wood council staff who are so afraid of their own shadows they cant make a decision to save their lives. We pay around £200million in council tax and the place looks like it should be twinned with Basra and Beiruit! A joke the lot of them! house on the hill
  • Score: -2

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