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Campaign Diary Week 2 – Philippa Purchase

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 Crisis the Stratton ward by-election has been postponed.

Green campaigner Philippa Purchase is standing for the Green Party in the Bude-Stratton Town Council Stratton ward by-election on 19th March. Philippa is a Bude resident, and currently sits on the Town Council Climate Change and Environment Committee, helping the council develop its climate emergency action plan.

Philippa also volunteers at the Refill Shop in Bude, and for Friends of the Earth. The following is a brief insight into her campaign for the town council, currently in its second week, in her own words.

A busy week and lots of nice conversations

I’ve had a busy week this week, starting with my regular shift volunteering at the Refill Shop. We had a new till system installed so that took a bit of learning, but it should be a big improvement as we’ll be able to scan items with bar codes. We had the first customer to ask us whether we stock refillable hand gel – coronavirus worries are starting to surface in Bude!

Philippa Purchase at Refill Shop till

I also joined a small group of keen gardeners from Bude Friends of the Earth to continue our maintenance work on the flower bed next to the old Pumping Station (by the Castle in Bude). It was wet and muddy work, but we managed to tidy the whole bed, while keeping the area vibrant and stocked with food for insects and birds. Of course, we don’t use any weedkillers so the work involves hand weeding and pruning. Unfortunately there’s always some litter and dog poo to clear up as well, but once we were finished the whole area looked much smarter and more cared for.

Bude Friends of the Earth weeding

I spent some time this week talking to people in Stratton, asking them how they feel about the Town Council and whether they have any issues. Generally people seem very happy with the Town Council, which is great news, but issues people mentioned they were concerned about were the infrastructure needed to support new housing plans, parking problems, and feeling a bit neglected compared with Bude. Thanks to everyone who took time out of their busy days to speak to me, and I will pass your concerns on.

Philippa Purchase canvassing in Stratton

I also had an email from a motorcyclist who wanted to understand my views on promoting motorcycling as a less carbon-intensive way of travelling. I would support any methods of transport which encourage people out of their cars (particularly as there are now electric motorcycles available). My correspondent had loads of great ideas for encouraging two wheeled transport, and I will certainly be following those up in my role on the Bude-Stratton Climate Change and Environment Committee.

Talking of committees, Thursday is full council day at Bude-Stratton Town Council, and the councillors are voting on the first draft of the Climate Action Plan I’ve helped create. The public are welcome to attend so I’ll go along and let you know how the voting goes.