Labour Doorstep | Why you may not have seen us around and about in Cowick

Earlier today, I and my Cowick Labour colleagues were out talking to residents about issues affecting them – an operation we refer to as #LabourDoorstep.

We picked up many instances of casework:

1) Route of the P Bus – especially for residents with long-term illnesses
2) State of glass recycling bank at St Thomas Shopping Precinct
3) Uneven and damage pavement on Bowhay Lane
4) Abandoned cars with no current tax disc
6) Comments on the recent Cowick Street improvements in St. Thomas

7) #CostOfCameron

In addition, we received one or two comments about never being seen around in the Ward.

Is this a fair comment? It probably would be if we were full-time councillor, but we’re not.

So how do we spend our time?

Well, dealing with the casework above and others that come to use from phone calls, e-mails, organised meetings with community groups and residents does take time, as do the regular schedule of council meetings and councillor briefings.

And each week I try to spend some time week walking around the Ward  and riding the P bus talking to residents – but admittedly this is normally during the working day.

Cowick Ward Image
Map of the Cowick ward

Presented below is a table of key facts about our ward: from the 2011 Census for Cowick.

Main Census Indicators – Cowick
Indicator Cowick Exeter Ward*
Population 5,650 117,773 13th
Households 2,315 49,242 17th
Population change since 2001 – 0.1% 6.0% 14th
Persons aged under 16 18.3% 15.8% 7th
Persons of working age (16 – 64) 58.9% 68.6% 16th
Persons of retirement age 22.6% 15.6% 2nd
Persons of non white ethnic group 2.1% 6.9% 17th
Persons stating general health ‘bad’ or ‘very bad’ 5.9% 4.8% 3rd
Persons aged 16 – 74 with no qualifications 27.0% 18.3% 3rd
Persons aged 16 – 74 with degree level qualifications 19.3% 28.6% 16th
Persons aged 16 – 74 who are full time students 4.8% 16.4% 17th
Households with no cars / vans 21.3% 27.1% 12th
Households rented from local authority / housing association 13.6% 17.0% 8th
Average household size 2.4 2.3 3rd
Households with no central heating 4.4% 5.3% 11th

* Rank out of the 18 wards in the city

You can see from the table, that there are 2315 households in Cowick.

Over the course of a year we might carry out 50 Labour Doorstep sessions

Each Labour Doorstep session lasts about 2 hours and I guess we might speak to 25 households if we’re lucky.

The means we might talk to 1,250 households each year .

And that equates to talking to each household every 2 years…but that’s only if someone is in.

We may have only talked to 25 households yesterday, but we knocked on over 100 doors.

We try to carry out Labour Doorstep sessions over weekends, early evenings, daytime and our records show us when we last spoke to someone.

We still see on our sheets last contact dates before 2000 – not many, but enough. So if you are one of these, sorry

If no-one was in we left an A5 leaflet with contact details of the full Cowick Labour team – City Councillors, County Councillor and MP – on one side and on the other a fill-in slip to raise an issue with us.

And face-to-face isn’t the only method we  use – we try and phone residents in the Ward if we have a contact phone numnber, there’s the Cowick Labour Councillors Facebook page, I have my own Facebook page, there’s the Cowick page on Exeter Labour Party website, I have contact details on Exeter City Council website, you can always find me on twitter as @CllrPaul4Cowick and of course this blog.

None of the previous covers the regular newsletters – and occasional street updates – we push through your letterbox. You may not read them, but that is part of our strategy of letting you know what we’re up to in Cowick

We do try and reach you, honest. But please remember that communication is a 2-way process – we do try and make contact with you, but you can always reach us.

We do listen