Elected in 2022 Local Elections Tom Hunt Candidate for Local Election in Walkley Sheffield

Tom Hunt

Tell us a little bit about yourself

I live in Upperthorpe and have lived in Walkley ward for 15 years. It’s where my friends and family live. This is my home.

I work at Sheffield University and I volunteer in the local community. I’m the Chair of Trustees at Zest, the local charity that runs Upperthorpe healthy living centre, providing employment and training services and kids activities.

I know the problems we face locally and I’m standing for election because I want to help fix them.

What do you think makes a good local councillor?

A good local councillor really knows the area they represent. They understand the problems that people in the area face and they know what needs to change. But they also know the positives of the area they represent, why it is a good place to live and how to make it better.

A good councillor always speaks up for their area. They listen to the voices and opinions of people who live there and represent their views. If I’m elected this is how I’ll take on the job of being a councillor for Walkley.

Tell us three things you're aiming to focus on or achieve for your ward during your term as councillor

As your councillor my work will be guided by listening to your views and hearing your opinions and ideas. Change only comes when we work together. Three areas that I want to focus on are:

Housing. For many people, housing is unaffordable. I want to do what I can to campaign for more affordable housing.

Supporting charities and local groups. Local charities like Zest and community groups in our ward do brilliant work. I will work to support them so they can help more people in our area.

Getting around. I want to help improve transport and travel in our ward. Buses are too unreliable and expensive. Labour’s plan for Bus Franchising will mean local people can influence our services, rather than the bus companies controlling the routes, timetables and fares. I also support improving cycling infrastructure.

Tell us three things you're aiming to focus on or achieve for the city of Sheffield during your term as councillor

Some of the areas I want to focus on are:

Sheffield doesn’t get the investment we need from the government. I want to focus on making the case for more funding and more powers to be devolved to the city so that we have more control over our city’s future.

We need a fair deal for Sheffield. I want to help ensure that the city centre continues to develop. This means making sure that the city centre has good shops and excellent leisure and cultural facilities that are accessible and affordable for all.

I would like to see more affordable homes in the city centre and ensure that all new developments are of the highest possible quality. I want to help to make sure the supply of affordable housing across the city is improved.

Transport: “Air pollution contributes to 500 deaths a year in Sheffield. Living alongside a busy road carries the same risk as passively smoking 10 cigarettes a day.”. Supported by better public transport and disabled accessibility, do you think private motor traffic should eventually be excluded from Sheffield city centre?

  • Yes
  • Unsure
  • No

If you'd like to add details on your position, please do so here

I support measures to ensure that the most polluting vehicles are not driving in the city centre. But I don’t support a full ban of private vehicles. There’s several reasons why I think this: Lots of people have no choice but to use their own cars or vans for their work. These are often people such as carers or couriers who should be paid more for what they do. Many of them will need to enter the city centre in their work so I worry that a full ban could hurt people on low wages who have to use their own cars.

Housing: "The introduction of Selective Licensing can bring widespread benefits to the local community. In particular it will ensure that all private rented property within the designated area is safe and well managed". Do you think Landlord Licensing in Sheffield should be extended, from currently applying to Abbeydale Road, Chesterfield Road and London Road, to covering more wards?

  • Yes
  • Unsure
  • No

If you'd like to add details on your position, please do so here

Everyone who rents should expect their home to be safe, well managed and well maintained. I support the introduction of a city-wide licensing scheme to help ensure that all private rented property in the city is at a good standard. Licensing schemes cost money to introduce and enforce. Labour wants central government to support and fund the council to implement city-wide licensing. This is just one example of where powers and budgets should be devolved from Westminster to local government.

If you'd like to add details on your position, please do so here

The UK is extremely centralised with too many powers and budgets held centrally at Westminster. I want to see more powers and budgets devolved from Westminster to local government here in Sheffield. I also support ‘double devolution’ so that powers and budgets are also devolved, where possible, from the Town Hall to residents. Local Area Committees are a way to do this and I support their further development. As a new councillor I will encourage residents in Walkley ward to get involved with the Local Area Committees and with the Council’s new committee system so that the Council’s decisions and services are informed by your views.

If you'd like to add details on your position, please do so here

Community wealth building is a new approach to economic development that I support. Sometimes when people talk about community wealth building, it isn’t clear what it means. As a councillor I want to make sure things are explained clearly so it’s important to define what we mean.

View the Labour Party policies