THE Green Party’s new city councillors have pledged to fight for improved social housing conditions and better cycling infrastructure.

The Greens were the biggest winners in last week’s elections, gaining three seats from other parties and four on the night.

Chris Jarvis, leader of the Green group at Oxford City Council, welcomed the new councillors.

READ AGAIN: Green Party the biggest winner in city council elections

The councillor, who represents the St Mary’s ward, said: “It was an incredible night for the Green Party, the only party to make gains, and we got elected in places where we’ve never been elected before.

“The seats we won are ones we’ve been working very hard on over the last year, with excellent candidates who have been gaining votes year upon year.

“The city council still has a Labour majority, but we’ll be holding them to account and keeping the promises we made to voters on the doorstep.”

Oxford Mail: Oxford Town Hall, where the city council holds its meetings. Picture: Ed NixOxford Town Hall, where the city council holds its meetings. Picture: Ed Nix

Arguably the biggest shock of the night was Green candidate Lois Muddiman taking Colin Cook’s Osney and St Thomas ward seat.

Mr Cook, a former Lord Mayor of Oxford, had been chair of both the council’s planning committee, and licensing and gambling acts committee.

The incoming councillor was elected at the fifth time of asking.

She said: “I was really delighted to have finally won a council seat, having first started in 2016.

“It’s four times I’ve stood as a city councillor and once for the county, so to win is really exciting.

“People want change and for there to be more of a green focus – we want to see more investment in renewable energy and safter infrastructure for cycling.

“I’ve lived here for 30 years and cycling on the Botley Road doesn’t feel safter now than it did back then.”

Oxford Mail: Lois Muddiman will represent the Osney and St Thomas ward. Picture supplied by the Green PartyLois Muddiman will represent the Osney and St Thomas ward. Picture supplied by the Green Party

Rosie Rawle made it two Green councillors representing the Donnington ward, alongside Lucy Pegg, and said: “To make the gains we did shows that a fairer, greener Oxford struck a chord with voters.

“On a very local level, after speaking to thousands of voters when knocking on doors, repairs to social housing and ensuring disabled access can make a massive difference.

“Safer cycling infrastructure too, and across Oxford, the wider priorities are social inequality and those hit by the cost of living crisis.”

Oxford Mail: Rosie Rawle will represent the Donnington ward. Picture supplied by the Green PartyRosie Rawle will represent the Donnington ward. Picture supplied by the Green Party

Al Morris was elected to the Marston ward, winning by 246 votes, and said: “I was tired and exhausted by the time the count came in, but hugely proud of our achievements.

“It was important to win with a bit of a margin as it gives a surge of belief going forward.

“At a local level, I want to encourage food growing initiatives in our homes and gardens, plus the use of allotments – we have to be more self-sufficient.”

Oxford Mail: Al Morris will represent the Marston ward. Picture supplied by the Green PartyAl Morris will represent the Marston ward. Picture supplied by the Green Party

Elected to the St Mary’s ward, Emily Kerr said: “It’s an honour to be the new councillor for the ward and I’m unbelievably excited to get stuck in.

“Oxford is facing a massive cost of living crisis and a need for affordable homes.

“We need to help householders reduce their bills and look at better insulation in homes, with hardship funds for those who need them.”

Oxford Mail: Emily Kerr will represent the St Mary’s ward. Picture supplied by the Green PartyEmily Kerr will represent the St Mary’s ward. Picture supplied by the Green Party

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