Labour’s Adam Fox shares his vision for Colchester
ADAM Fox never wanted to fall in love with Colchester when he arrived in the town as a fresh-faced student 15 years ago.
But a journey that began on a politics course at the University of Essex has now placed him among the mix of candidates to lead Colchester Council in May’s local election.
Now boss of the Colchester Labor group, Mr Fox has swapped the conference room for the town hall as he looks up at the upper borough seat.
“I came here to study at the University of Essex and once I moved here I really wanted to stay,” he said.
“I think it’s a really great place, has its own sense of identity with all the history and great places to visit.
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“You have access to the coast, amazing things like Colchester oysters and you can get to London very easily.”
Having moved from near Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, to Colchester, the party leader soon became involved in the Labor Party and the community.
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He gathered other Labor students and began meeting councilors to immerse himself in the world of local politics.
His world has always revolved around helping others, working in the charity sector and helping charities, such as Open Road’s SOS bus, and helping drug addicts and alcohol.
“This kind of work is really rewarding,” Mr. Fox explained. “Getting involved in consulting has helped me pursue this work on a larger scale.”
And now he will have the chance to compete to put his vision of helping others into action if Labor takes control of Colchester Council.
He shared power in the council’s so-called rainbow coalition in the 2010s through a pact with the Liberal Democrats, backed by Highwoods Independents.
But last year, when the Independents switched allegiance to the Conservatives, as the party with the most seats, the balance of power shifted and the council became Tory-controlled.
However, the timing couldn’t have been better for Mr. Fox.
The Partygate scandals and rising cost of living have seen Labor leading in national opinion polls, so will this translate into more Labor seats in Colchester?
Mr Fox said: ‘I think what voters will get if they vote for the Labor candidates in May will be true community champions.
“They will have someone who really cares about their community and is active in their neighborhoods. The current 11 advisors we have are highly visible and always available to talk.
“We really try to listen to residents who are particularly concerned about the cost of living crisis – it’s something we know is a real problem for everyone.
“Addressing the environmental emergency and ensuring communities are safe so that when residents leave their front doors, they can do so with confidence is another goal.”
Mr Fox explained how environmental issues and pride in keeping the community clean is a hot topic in the city, and it is something Labor is keen to ensure.
He added: “What people want to see from their council is results and when there is a problem they want action taken.
“Littering and fly tipping is a problem they don’t want to go around, they want it solved immediately and we would focus on this problem street by street.”
“We will ensure that people’s streets are clean and that rubbish is collected and that parks and green spaces are protected.
“We also really welcome the funding for Greenstead and are keen to make sure the community is on the side of the projects and we can work to ensure all areas of Colchester have access to equal opportunity.”
And why does the man from Buckinghamshire want to see Colchester do so poorly?
“I think Colchester is a really fantastic place,” he said.
“We want to make sure people raising families in Colchester have the best possible opportunities on their doorstep.”