Oliver Freeston is the Conservative Candidate for the Croft Baker Ward for North East Lincolnshire Council

In early September I was selected as the Conservative Candidate for the Croft Baker ward in the May 2018 North East Lincolnshire Council election. What an accolade.

I am proud to have the opportunity to be the Borough’s youngest councillor, but specifically a Conservative. Despite a strong working class background, and a largely dysfunctional family, I see myself as a Conservative because I believe that providing social welfare needs carefully calculated funding. Not just empty promises which cannot be realistically fulfilled. It is not good enough to promise, without being substantiated by figures. Labour simply over-promise and under-deliver. I have a great sense of right and wrong, and I am absolutely indebted to our wonderful NHS. But, it must be managed efficiently.

Although I have always had a keen interest in politics I do not like the political point-scoring that often goes on between different parties, I would prefer to spend my time doing something more productive – like fulfilling the pledges that have been promised. You see, I may be a Tory, but I am most certainly not what we are perceived to be. I am fed up of hearing people question our social conscience, everyone wants largely the same thing: a thriving NHS, effective emergency services, and so on. The debate is: how do we manage our resources to achieve this?

As a local lad I get quite upset when I can so clearly see the standards drop in my town. Cleethorpes was always a bustling seaside town, popular with tourists, and enjoyed by everyone. Unfortunately, continuous mismanagement of resources, and questionable decision-making have led to my town being in real danger of losing our great reputation.

Problems are being avoided rather than solved. Labour councillors are blaming the Conservative Government for cutting the police budget. I attended a local meeting which offered residents and business owners the chance to raise their concerns with current Labour councillors, police and charities. Fantastic. But, in reality, this was just turned into another opportunity for some political point-scoring.

The Labour Councillor for Croft Baker claimed “the problems with the policing has been because of the cuts from the central Government” and echoed by the Police Inspector. My first thought was, if the Police are so tight for numbers, and thin on the ground why were their two PCSOs also in attendance, on top of the Sergeant and Inspector? To me, that is wasting resources which could be out tackling the problems which are so blatantly obvious! But, I am just a fresh faced kid, I wouldn’t know anything…

In just under six months I will be contesting the Croft Baker Ward, and promise to my neighbours in Croft Baker that I will add some common sense into decision making, but most importantly, do as much as I truly can to sort our issues out.

Enough is enough.