Preston councillor Pav Akhtar in challenge to visit 30 streets in 30 days in Plungington to hear residents' concerns

When councillor Pav Akhtar was elected onto Preston City Council in May he vowed not to take the Labour safe seat of Plungington for granted.

Tuesday, 9th July 2019, 12:07 pm
Updated Tuesday, 9th July 2019, 1:07 pm
Coun Akhtar on day seven of his 30 days/30 streets challenge

And, true to his word, he is now embarking on a challenge to visit 30 streets in his ward over 30 days asking residents if they have issues to raise with him.

He says concerns about fly tipping, pot holes and cuts in policing are the topics which come up time and time again.

Speaking to the Post about taking on the challenge coun Akhtar said: “People say that councillors only ever turn up at election time and I really want to challenge that notion.

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Coun Akhtar on day four of his 30 days/30 streets challenge

“Councillors work hard all year round but the problem is we need to make that work visible.

“It’s about turning up on the steps. People have issues day in day out.

“I had one man say to me last week, ‘you’re the first person in 20 years that I have seen knocking on my door.’

“What I’m also doing is trying to create a digital footprint about it.

Fly-tipping near Elmsley Street in Moor Park

“Saying these are the streets that I’m going to, these are the concerns that I’m picking up and it starts giving politics credibility.

“We had 30 per cent turn out in the local elections in Preston and that’s terrible. It’s telling me that either people are happy or dissatisfied.

“We need to reconnect. It’s a really simple concept - focusing on 30 different streets in my ward; hear their issues, deal with their issues, fix their issues.”

Coun Akhtar added: “Fly tipping has been a seriously big issue, then there’s the pot holes on the roads.

“And then there are the cuts in policing numbers and the security issues for people not feeling safe.”