This year’s local elections are just around the corner, and we are turning the spotlight on all South Tyneside's candidates in the run-up to polling day on May 3.
Each one will be given the opportunity to tell readers why they are standing and why people should vote for them.
Here's what the three Cleadon and East Boldon ward candidates have to say:
SARAH JEAN MCKEOWN (GREEN PARTY)
Why am I standing as a candidate for the Green Party in Cleadon and East Boldon?
The Green Party is a party of fairness, honesty and respect for each other and our environment.
Inequality is something that I feel strongly about and is sadly all too apparent here in the North East.
Economic policy, privatisation, stigmatising government policies and more fundamentally globalisation and climate change are all widening the gap between rich and poor – the ‘haves and have nots’, and this is not fair.
South Tyneside deserves better. Please vote Green on May 3rd
MARGARET MELING (LABOUR PARTY)
My family and I have lived in the Cleadon and East Boldon Ward for 35 years and I’m determined that others will continue to enjoy the natural amenities, safe neighbourhoods and good schools that we have enjoyed.
If re-elected I will continue to support and work with local groups who share these aims and help develop the community spirit so much in evidence.
I chair the council’s HR Committee and sit on the Place Select and Standards Committees.
I represent the council on a number of outside bodies and am a governor of East Boldon Juniors.
I’m a member of Cleadon in Bloom and East Boldon Neighbourhood Forum.
JEFF MILBURN (CONSERVATIVE PARTY)
The local elections are about local issues, not national issues, and we all know what the singlebiggest issue facing our villages is right now – the Labour Party wants to build 5,950 houses all over our borough and have their eyes on several sites around our (sic) ward.
How effective do you think local campaigns to save our greenbelt can be when our three councillors are from the same party that want to build everywhere?
I have years of experience in local planning – I was on the planning committee for several years – and I can make your voices heard properly.
Chris Binding, Local Democracy Reporting Service