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Local elections 2018: Demand council candidates support nature

Monday 16th April 2018

Kestrel chicks (credit Philip Braude)Kestrel chicks (credit Philip Braude)

Challenge your local election candidates to stand up for London's wildlife

On Thursday 3rd May Londoners get the chance to vote for new councillors to represent them at their local town hall.

The 32 London borough councils play an important role in deciding policies that affect the environment. They make decisions on planning applications, run local parks, and maintain trees and public spaces.

Electing councillors who understand the importance of wildlife and how it can benefit people’s health and wellbeing is crucial. You can help by asking candidates for your local council whether they will make a series of commitments to help nature in your borough.

Five commitments to ask of your local council candidates

Candidates may be talking to you on your doorsteps and in your streets over the next few weeks leading up to 3rd May. You can let them know how much wildlife matters to you, and ask them what they plan to do in your borough to help it thrive.

London Wildlife Trust is asking candidates to commit to:

  1. Safeguarding nature and wildlife in the borough by protecting and conserving Sites of Importance for Nature Conservation, Metropolitan Open Land and/or Green Belt, and rivers and waterways;
  2. Supporting the full implementation of the Mayor of London’s London Environment Strategy, to promote the design and delivery of ‘green infrastructure’ to benefit nature across London;
  3. Supporting initiatives that help the borough’s residents engage with and benefit from nature;
  4. Ensuring management of the borough’s parks and greenspaces is to a high environmental quality;
  5. Ensuring new development is designed and built to the highest environmental standards, along the lines of At Home with Nature.

How to vote in local elections

Voters go to the polls to elect new local councillors on Thursday 3rd May. Each of London’s boroughs is divided into a number of wards (the smallest borough has 18 wards and the largest 24). On polling day voters can select up to three candidates to represent their ward.

To vote in local elections you must be 18 years or over on polling day and also be a British citizen, a qualifying Commonwealth citizen, or a citizen of the European Union, resident in the UK. The deadline to register is Tuesday 17th April - go to gov.uk/register-to-vote.