THE LABOUR councillor who represents Bromsgrove South on Worcestershire County Council has resigned from his position after being offered the chance to live and work in Toronto.
Coun Chris Bloore made the announcement this morning, saying it had been a privilege to represent his local community and work with inspirational people from clubs, schools and associations across Aston Fields, Breme Park, Charford, Rock Hill and the Stokes.
In a statement he said it had been an agonising decision but was the right one for him and wife Charlotte.
“I am sad to be leaving an incredible community with so many amazing people.
“It’s easy to become despondent with politics, but in my division I’ve worked with inspiring head teachers, school governors, the entire staff at ‘the Pod’ (formerly the Starlight Café), Meadow Park FC, BDHT, community organisations such as ‘Keep Bromsgrove Beautiful’ and council officers who have moved heaven and earth to help facilitate improvements in my community.”
He also thanked a host of other people and had a parting shot for the authority’s ruling group.
“I can’t pretend it’s been an easy experience, being in opposition – watching helplessly as our children’s services go into special measures then to be outsourced, our transport network decimated and a significant roll back of council services that supported the most vulnerable because of cuts have made the lives of people I’ve represented unnecessarily harder.”
But he added he would always remember the positives and what he achieved, including helping raise funds for the new-look ‘Shac community centre’ with BDHT, putting on computer lessons at the Starlight Café and providing clothes and help to get young people into work.
He also cited helping to build the library at Charford First School, ensuring £30,000 investment went into the active kitchen programme to give young people a hot meal in the school holidays, adopting roads, lowering speed limits and helping to support Worcestershire Pride.
He said there had been a lot of ‘blood, sweat and tears’ but added it had all been worth it.
In 2013, with Labour finishing third in the previous election with just 18 per cent of the vote, Coun Bloore was voted in, polling 49 per cent.
He then increased his vote to 51 per cent four years later.
“I still believe in politics, probably more in the people I have met and worked with than I do in the way our democratic structures work.
“There is far too much power in the hands of the cabinet, especially in local government, which often means councillors are effectively bypassed and communities ignored.
“Nevertheless, there is still scope for councillors to make a difference and I’ve been proud to work alongside a Labour group that’s always spoken up to protect services, never voted to make people poorer and constantly held the executive to account.”
He concluded by thanking Coun Luke Mallett and Coun Michael Thompson for the opportunities his colleagues had given him and the faith they had intrusted in him.