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Oxfordshire election results show public support for low traffic schemes

Liberal Democrats, the Labour Party and the Green Party strengthen position: loud opposition to safer, slower, streets isn't a silver-bullet election-winner, writes Juliana O'Rourke

12 May 2023
YouGov survey of Oxford residents on traffic measures
YouGov survey of Oxford residents on traffic measures
Cllr Kerr`s map of electoral gains for the Lib/Lab/Green alliance
Cllr Kerr`s map of electoral gains for the Lib/Lab/Green alliance

 

In the local elections in early May 2023, Oxfordshire saw four of the six councils involved in elections, two ‘all outs’ where all seats were in the polls, and two ‘thirds’ where one-third of the seats were voted for.

The election saw 67 candidates running for 17 seats – and the results mean the Liberal Democrats are now the council's largest party.


Cllr Emily Kerr and a range of speakers will be discussing these issues at Cycle County Active County 2023: book now!


The Liberal Democrats, the Labour Party and the Green Party will remain in control of the council as part of their alliance and the Conservative Party will now be weaker.

The number of councillors who are part of this cross-party alliance has risen from 26 to 31.

It's utterly remarkable that across two councils which were Tory in 2017, we now just have one Councilllor. Does (this) show that loud opposition to safer, slower, streets isn't going to be a silver-bullet election-winner? Yep, I'd say so

Regarding these results, Green Councillor Emily Kerr tweeted: “Some history: in 2015, Oxford's traffic was overwhelmingly terrible, as it's been since at least the 1970s, so the Tory County Council came up with a plan to reduce traffic including traffic filters and a parking levy. They didn't introduce it…

"In 2021, a Lib/Lab/Green 'rainbow alliance' took over the County Council. And immediately started implementing an updated traffic plan including Cowley LTNs. In the 2022 elections (just Oxford City) no 'anti' independents won - it swung  to Green and I got a seat.

"In 2022, the rainbow alliance put in my local East Oxford LTNs, 20mph roll-outs, and announced further plans, including traffic filters. Oxford became the centre of global conspiracy theories and protests, as if we were the architects of '15 min cities' (we weren’t).

"Anyway, last weekend, four of our six districts had local elections. The Tories apparently forgot the reasons they'd suggested the idea in the first place, and campaigned aggressively against the (low traffic) measures.

"It's utterly remarkable that across two councils which were Tory in 2017, we now just have one councilllor. Does (this) show that loud opposition to safer, slower, streets isn't going to be a silver-bullet election-winner? Yep, I'd say so.”

Oxfordshire Cycling Network responded to Cllr Kerr: “What most of the public understand is that the overbearing dominance and damage caused by private car traffic has to be reduced, even if it is going to be painful. That's why they overwhelmingly support LTNs, Traffic filters, ZEZ and Workplace parking levy. They're necessary.”

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Warrington Borough Council
Warrington
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Warrington Borough Council
Warrington
Principal Projects Manager
Warrington Borough Council
Warrington
£46,464 - £49,498
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