I wanted to take this opportunity to thank you all my readers who are supporters of the Green Party for your continued support and to reflect on all the successes the region has had this year.
Having launched our European Elections campaign at the beginning of the year, the momentum has been building. Our members responded generously to our fundraising appeal, raising thousands of pounds. This increases significantly our ability to fight a strong and effective campaign.
The local elections in May saw us increase the number of councillors in the region for the eighth year running, and the Green Party now sits on more district authorities in the East than in any other region in Britain. Many Green candidates were only a few votes away from being elected, and we look set to make further gains next May.
So far our future looks promising, but we still have a lot of work ahead of us. Our continued success comes amidst fresh reports that the effects of manmade climate change could be even worse than had been feared, as little as a year ago. With the other parties still so far away from taking real action on ecological and social justice concerns, it is more urgent than ever that the Greens are able to gain more power – and gain it fast. Only with the active support of everyone who believes in what we are trying to do will we be able to achieve our goals for 2008, and all the years ahead. I hope you will consider giving the Party all you can afford of yourself and of your time, at this vital time.
One exciting development in recent months has been the passage with an overwhelming majority of the Leadership referendum within the Party nationally. Now that Party members have signalled so strongly their desire for a formal Leadership structure within the Party for the first time ever, I am looking forward with hope to the Party really uniting around this decision. This time next year, we will have a Leader in place, and let us hope that we will soon start getting the national press coverage that we, as a Party whose time has come, truly deserve.
Today, I have been putting my own New Year’s resolutions together; they include finding new ways of working with other Euro-list candidates and with local Parties to ensure that Eastern Region Green Party gets more press coverage than ever before, in 2008. (I have also resolved to keep my house tidier than ever before… Now THAT will be a challenge!)
I look forward to meeting many more of you in 2008. Thank you once again for your support in this remarkable year that we have had, in 2007, and very best wishes for the New Year. And please don’t hesitate to get in touch with me, if you wish to do so, about any matter of mutual hope or mutual concern.
[Cllr. Rupert Read; Eastern Region Lead Candidate for 2009 European Elections]