Traffic and climate change key issues for Kenilworth's St John's Ward
With 13 new councillors taking office on the Kenilworth Town Council the Kenilworth Weekly News profiled each of the town’s five wards, and the councillors within each ward.
Readers can learn about each councillor and the key issues they believe face their ward.
This week’s edition will feature the councillors from the St John’s Ward.
Cllr Samantha Cooke moved to Kenilworth in August 2018, and she teaches at the University of Warwick in the Department of Politics and International Studies.
She said: “Kenilworth is a fantastic town, and St John’s is at its centre with the main shopping area being here and ensuring local businesses succeed is key. Other issues such as traffic congestion, which will be affected by new developments, is also a main focal point.
“Increasing political transparency, communication, and engagement are key, and this is something I am attempting to develop through initiatives such as the public vote for the shop window display competition.”
Cllr Richard Dickson, who has served on the council since 2017, works at Coventry University, and has lived in Kenilworth for 25 years.
He said: “I’ve learned that what’s special about Kenilworth as a place to live, visit and work is it’s huge sense of community and belonging.
“The challenges facing St John’s include how new housing is planned to reinforce this sense of community and what we can do together to respond to climate change, including encouraging more train services to reduce our reliance on our cars. New leisure facilities are also vital to enhance the strength of our community, so that the outdoor pool or lido meets local residents’ needs and can boost tourism and so that plans for the new facilities at Castle Farm are based on engagement with local residents.”
Cllr Andrew Milton has lived in the town for 10 years, and both his children attend Kenilworth School. Cllr Milton, who works in marketing at Severn Trent, is a keen squash player and cyclist.
He said: “Along with the rest of Kenilworth there are lots of changes for us over the next few years, especially from the new developments across the town. These are going to bring new people to our town but also challenges like additional traffic and congestion impacting the main road that goes through our ward. We’re keen to see measures which promote alternative forms of transport and improve our air quality.
“I want people to feel that they have a council which is open, transparent and accessible to the people of the town.”
Cllr Jack Worrall, who attended St Nicholas Primary and Kenilworth Secondary and Sixth Form schools, works in a research role for Phillip Bennion, a Liberal Democrat MEP for the West Midlands.
Cllr Worral said: “I have enjoyed everything Kenilworth has to offer and now I want to give back to the community that has given me a great head start.
“The main issues for the community I represent surround the infrastructure of Kenilworth. It is important with thousands of homes being added to the town that we have adequate facilities to handle this.
“As the English Young Liberals Chair it is vitally important to me that young voices are heard at every level of government. We must listen to young people in everything we do.”