Statement from Fred Roberts

We invited them to tell you a little about who they are, any political history and about their political leanings.

I was born in Wrexham, I attended the old Rhos and Grango school and lived in and around Rhos and Wrexham most of my life.
Just over 4 years ago I was asked by 2 of the Councillors on Rhos community council if I would like to join Rhos community council as someone like me could be in a position to help the community of Rhos.
Due to the ward changes in the area I have decided to run for Rhos County council, I have worked well with the previous councillor and been involved with the food banks, Santa truck, and supported Ponciau banks. I am a senior manager at Yellow Cars and Director of Tts Van hire both based in Ponciau. I am an independent canididate who wants to see Rhos community thrive and be a safe area for everyone. I do not have to maintain any party views due to me being independent candidate, so I can help the community with any issues we may have.

Questions & Answers

1. What are the three biggest issues for your ward, how do you think they need to be resolved, and what will you do to achieve it?

Speaking to the people of Rhos, one of the things I hear is the lack of social housing, We need to build more social houses on brown belt land. Litter and dog fouling is an issue and needs to be reviewed and may be a regular street cleaner for each community. In the Rhos area Llwynenion is an issue in our ward and I will do my best if elected to tackle the issue head on, I will not hide from this issue.

2. What do you think needs to be done to help Wrexham recover from the pandemic and what hands-on-role can you play as a councillor ?

I would support any business initiatives that would encourage people and businesses back into our villages and towns Rhos used to be a thriving village. There are more and more businesses coming back to the Industrial estates we just need to bring more people and business to Wrexham. Lets get Rhos back to how it used be, where everyone still had that community feeling of Rhos.

3. As a councillor you may have the chance to take on further roles eg. Lead Member, Audit, Scrutiny. What appeals to you and what skills do you bring to that role?

Having been on the community council for over 4 years, I am familiar with the infrastructure of the Council and have a some of the knowledge and experience needed to meet the challenges in various roles.

4. What do the words climate emergency mean to you and your ward?

As Wrexham Council have declared a climate emergency, I would work hard to support all current and future initiatives locally and across Wales. I would also look at parking for electric vehicles in the Rhos ward as this will soon be a local issue with no current facilities to provide this service.

5. What is the biggest thing you would have done differently from the ruling administration over the last 5 years? (Or, if you were part of the Administration - what would you have done differently?)

I personally would have spoken to the constituents in the Rhos and taken into account their views on City Status before a decision was made as it is not just about my personal view it would be about the people I represent. A local vote on this issue would have been my view, I have seen first hand the difficulties faced during the last 2 years through the pandemic and how difficult it has been.

6. Local health pressures are well documented, from delayed ambulances to issues in the hospital. How can the council help resolve those problems?

Having worked closely with the NHS during the pandemic as I still do, transporting out patients for Yellow Cars, I fully support all staff within the NHS who I believe have worked tirelessly delivering the best service possible in the current situation. I would like to see a greater accountability within the senior management structure within the Local Health Board which could lead to improvements in the current situation.

7. What will you do on a local level to help support people in your ward affected by the cost of living crisis?

I am currently involved with supporting one of the local food banks which I know has benefited many families in the area. As a Rhos Community Councillor , The Community Council have supported a local resilience group which has been working with the voluntary sector, like AVOW and Rhos Community Café/Pant Community Group to support those in need. I think all communities should have a food bank and all councillors should support it, this year we will all be affected by rising living and heating costs. Looking forward all areas should look to have a food bank just incase any of us have a need for it.

8. How would you improve the local education system?

Across Wrexham, some of our schools have been in special measures for too long. If elected, I would look to see if there has been any change and where we are going forward. I believe it is important that we support the younger generation to recieve the education they deserve.

9. When the public view the Full Council meeting in June, do you envision you could be part of a Party, Group or coalition, and if so, specifically who and why?

I have not and will not have any discussion with any party, group or coalition prior to the Election, I am standing as an independent councillor where Rhos is my main priority. I will not be deterred by party views.

10. This is a noteworthy election with 16 and 17 year olds now able to vote, what have you done to engage this new electorate and what do you think is the biggest issue for them locally ?

As I work with a lot of young people in my job, I encourage anyone who is old enough to work and make decisions to go on to higher education should have the right to vote. Leaving education can be very daunting for some and I would support all employment initiatives available to young people and would help to direct them to the right people to progress in their future. I would encourage all groups and businesses within Rhos to support our younger constituents.

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