Published 24 February, 2011
Balbriggan , Donabate , Election , Lusk , Malahide , Politics , Portmarnock , Rush , Skerries , Swords
Thursday, 24 February, 2011 – day before the election
On the final day of the campaign for election 2011, Trevor Sargent and his Green team undertake a lighting tour of the constituency. The tour concludes with a stop at the site of the future maritime museum in Balbriggan, where Trevor took the opportunity to say thanks to his team. It’s been a hectic three weeks but spirits are high.
Published 23 February, 2011
Election , Lusk , Rush
Wednesday, 23 February, 2011
Early this morning we find Trevor at Rush and Lusk train station giving out news and information for public transport users. It’s been a busy morning for Trevor; as well as meeting morning commuters at the station he’s also managed to contribute to Morning Ireland.
Monday, 21 February, 2011
Wet start to the day standing from 7am at Babriggan Train Station in the rain handing out the commuter flyer. Joined by Stephen, Lorcan, Frank and Diarmuid. Hardly any litter which suggests the leaflet was interesting.
Recording a video interview for the "Ask a Green" online event
Got new tyre for €70 as old out wrecked by pothole between Oldtown and the Naul. Then Lorcan filmed Q&A session with me for Ask a Green Day event running online tomorrow.
Canvassed Dun Emer in Lusk. Many people caught in negative equity bind. I explained the Green inspired Mortgage Protection Measures.
Evening time, took up Fingal Independent invitation to a Q&A session for Dublin North candidates in the Carnegie Court Hotel in Swords. No show again from Fine Gael. Labour and Fianna Fáil reps absent too but at least they sent running mates. Finished off night with meeting to discuss progress on getting Gaelcholáiste Ghlór na Mara to be built in Balbriggan. Spoke with Tánaiste’s advisor before meeting and will do so again tomorrow morning.
Published 14 February, 2011
Election , Fingal news , Lusk , Politics
Monday, 14 February, 2011
We join Trevor in Lusk, where he and the Green team are calling on residents in Chapel Farm. It’s a very cold night, but, thankfully, dry. One issue that has been raised repeatedly in the area is the lack of a secondary school.
Monday, 14 February 2011.
Swords Manor and Lusk are the areas today for the candidate to meet as many people as are at home to answer the door. Many matters relating to Fingal County Council are raised, such as footpath shortcomings to Swords village from Swords Manor, the long awaited Community Centre plans for this Brackenstown area and a badly planned wall in the Ormaond estate which encourages trespass of a private back garden. All these individual concerns will be personally followed up. The sooner the Green Party has an elected councillor for the area, the more we can do to address these and other local authority responsibilities.
Meanwhile, the future of our young people depends on this generation taking the right and often unpopular decisions now to incentivise moves towards a sustainalbe society. When the railways were built, people were afraid and objected, likewise when the Luas was being planned and now with the Green Party’s work to deliver the Metro to Swords, there are opponents of the Green Party who object. I do hope I will get enough NUMBER ONE votes to have a MANDATE FOR METRO.
After joining a hardy (weather-proof) group of Green canvassers, including my dear parents, to meet the communities in Lusk and Loughshinny, headed to the Constituency Office in Rivermall, Swords, for cup and a sandwich. Then into Dublin City for a Green press conference in the RHA Gallery, Ely Place, to contrast the open, transparent way in which the Green Party is accountable for public and private money it receives compared to the clandestine habits of other parties.
It is bizarre to see no donations to Fine Gael or Labour were declared to the Standards in Public Office Commission in the last year while a modest €11,800 in donations was declared by Fianna Fáil. The Green Party made a fulsome disclosure of €46,552 in donations which are mainly donations from public rep. disposable incomes.
Yet the 3 main parties between them look set to spend €5 million on the campaign, enough to employ 150 people for a year on the average industrial wage. The Green Party looks set to spend €35,000 from HQ and candidates in almost 43 constituencies between them all about €200,000.
So why the secrecy, why the lack of accountability? The Council of Europe wants the full publication of political party accounts, independently audited, so does the Green Party / An Comhaontas Glas. As Eddie Hobbs might say, ‘Show us the money’!
Sunday, 6 February 2011
Mass-goers in Lusk and Loughshinney were greeted by Trevor Sargent and members of the Green team as they headed home. Trevor took a moment to update us on what else he’s doing today.
5 February 2011
Cllr Cadogan Enright and his team from Co Down and Co Antrim turned up this morning for another Swords canvass and joined in with the local Green volunteers to meet the large number of people living in Holywell. Since the last General Election, the new Holywell Educate Together National School has been opened. I recall having the honour of planting an apple tree at the entrance to mark the Oscailt Oifigiúil.The apple variety was a Katie if I remember rightly, a delicious dessert apple originally bred in Sweden.
Sweden is one advanced country with a Government strategy published to end their reliance on fossil fuels by 2020. Such big picture planning did appeal to some folk in Holywell, but for others it was the here and now which we discussed, e.g. housing, starting a business, loss of income. Improvements in broadband availability were acknowledged but we realise we were starting from a low base. For most people the fact that I am locally available and active with a full time office open 6 days a week in Rivermall off Main Street, Swords, was more influential than any policy discussion. The exception to this being the appreciation expressed to Green Ministers in Government (including myself!) who had strongly and unanimously backed the roll out of Metro North.
At the invitation of Area Organiser, Ken Duffy, the all island canvassers then took a well earned break to watch the all island Irish rugby team play Italy, courtesy of The Slaughtered Lamb in Swords. This pub serves good food, by the way.
Wee interview with The Irish Times back at the office in Swords and caught up on some paperwork. Then out in the rain again to meet the people of Lusk. Must put in a call to the Council on Monday morning to have two broken street lights fixed at the Quickpenny Road end of The Green in Lusk. Always wondered how that road got its name, maybe I’ll find out tomorrow when I am back in Lusk, before moving on to Loughshinny.
4 February 2011
Great start to the day meeting Rang a Sé in St. Oliver Plunkett’s National School, Malahide. This very ecologically aware school of over 900 pupils is on its fifth Green Flag. Pupils were clued in to climate change impacts, ways to have a good quality of life while using less fossil fuels. They understood locking up carbon, the importance of local horticulture in reducing the carbon footprint of food, and how organic growing methods are less carbon intensive. They exhibited innovative cycle helmet designs. Over 70 pupils had cycled to school, even on this wet and windy day. Both boys and girls took part in a very creative fashion parade displaying great ingenuity in adapting post consumer materials to be modern and fashionable. At times like this there seems to be very good arguments to reduce the voting age substantially!
There was a good reception in Lusk too. When people consider who was bringing solutions to the table in Government, then the positive impact of Green Party Ministers becomes clearer. A number of former construction workers appreciated the Green incentives for grant aiding renewable energy installations and the energy saving grants for insulation etc. Likewise the Bike to Work scheme is seen as good value and a good incentive which benefits the economy and local quality of life.
By the time we got to Kelly’s Bay in Skerries, the wind and rain were tempestuous. That at least elicited some sympathy for the dedicated high visibility vested canvassers like Diarmuid, Brian and George, but made note taking nigh impossible. Nonetheless the need for a Green Economy to be created out of this difficult transition period was clear to many householders. One thing is for sure, had we been able to harness the powerful storm force winds buffeting us this evening, the €6 billion annual import bill for oil, gas and coal, would have been knocked back massively to a more affordable level.
Published 4 February, 2011
Election , Fingal news , Lusk , Politics
Lusk, 4 February, 2011
Today, after an afternoon canvassing in Lusk, Trevor takes a couple of minutes to share some of what he has been hearing on the doorsteps. Education is a major issue in Lusk and employment is an issue that most people are concerned about.