‘Our Ryde’: Residents step up to the plate to support and help their community

A bunch of Ryde residents, under the mentoring and support of two councillors, have formed a group called Our Ryde and are standing as candidates in the upcoming election

Our Ryde candidates

News shared by Michael Lilley on behalf of Our Ryde. Ed

A group of Ryde residents have come together under the banner of Our Ryde during Covid-19 and started talking via zoom about their vision for Ryde post-pandemic.

They were inspired by the leadership of the Mayor of Ryde, Cllr Michael Lilley and the Chair of Finance, Cllr Phil Jordan, who have been leading voices in the Town for transforming Ryde Town Council into an inclusive, listening, engaging and proactive Town Council.

Active members of the community
Michael and Phil are standing as independents for Ryde in the forthcoming Isle of Wight council elections and been encouraging Ryde residents to stand for the 16 Ryde Town Council seats.

In past years many RTC councillor seats have not been contested and not been truly representative of the community.

Lilley: Mentoring and support for candidates
Cllr Michael Lilley says:

“At the start of Covid-19, I initiated the Ryde Covid-19 Community Response Team, which helped many Ryde residents during the past year and I saw the incredible community spirit in the town and the hundreds of residents volunteering to help those in need.

“It was a fantastic response. I felt it was important that these voices within our incredible community should be encouraged and engaged with more.

“I started to encourage residents who would never get involved in local politics without support and mentoring. Our Ryde formed out of this dialogue. It is an incredible beginning and so proud to stand for Ryde Town Council with the seven other Our Ryde candidates.”

Michael Lilley (and Muddie)
Michael Lilley (and Muddie)

A diverse group of Ryde residents
Our Ryde is a diverse group of Ryde residents that support the Ryde Charter agreed by Ryde Town Council in 2021 and the positive actions in purchasing Vectis Hall, the Harbour and St. Thomas’s Church and plans to purchase Ryde Theatre.

Seeking wider diversity
The group wants to support a wider diversity with more community representative candidates to give the Council improved engagement with all parts of the Town.

In the current Council the average age has been over 70 and there are only four women. Our Ryde aims to change this situation and make sure that all seats are contested by a diverse and broader range of candidates.

Phil Jordan
Phil Jordan

Jordan: We work for you
Cllr Phil Jordan added,

“Our Ryde is a ground-breaking initiative to build upon the great work and successes we have already seen in Ryde and I am determined to continue the transformation we have made to our council and to the services we deliver for our community.

“We as a council and councillors work for you, the residents, and I want to ensure that the Council continues to develop into a role model council working with the community and improving our town for everyone.”

Achievements in last 12 months
During the past year, Ryde Town Council have invested in the community, created and supported Ryde Unite delivering services to the most vulnerable in the community, supported the Waterside pool to ensure it survives Covid restrictions, invested around £180,000 into an award winning Youth service, protected and secured the future of historic buildings in the town, secured the management of the Kickstart scheme providing jobs for over 30 of the younger people in our community and supported grant funding for events throughout the year.

Last summer, Ryde Town Council funded the Ticket to Ryde events throughout the town.

Jenna Sabine
Jenna Sabine

Sabine: More democratic decision-making
Jenna Sabine, owner of Monkton Arts standing in Ryde Appley Elmfield says,

“I am passionate that decision-making at local government level becomes much more democratic. People want and deserve their opinions to be listened to and their ideas brought to fruition.

“Ryde Town councillors should be a reflection and inclusiveness of the demographic of Ryde, showing diversity and representation. I am the owner of Monkton Arts and I would like to see cultural events and exciting community things happening in the town that I live in and love.” 

Richard May
Richard May

May: Standing to represent the views, aspirations and needs of residents
Richard May, previous head teacher of Greenmount Primary School, standing for Our Ryde in Ryde West says,

“I’m a firm believer in the right of the local community to positively engage with and influence their environment and I see the town’s council as a key expression of this right. 

“I am standing to represent the views, aspirations and needs of residents as Ryde enters an exciting new decade – building on the ground-breaking work of the last few years, there are so many things that can be done to make our town an even better place to live, work and visit”.   

Joanne Park
Joanne Park

Park: Give back to the community
Joanne Park, standing for Our Ryde in Ryde South-East says:

“I have lived in Ryde my whole life and feel this is such a special place.

“I feel very passionately that Ryde, and the support of Ryde, played a huge part in making my life what it is today and I would like to give back to the community helping others to fulfil their dreams.”

Lisa Carter
Lisa Carter

Carter: I didn’t know what the council was for
Lisa Carter, is a single parent mum, and standing for Our Ryde for the Ryde Appley and Elmfield for one of the three places with Jenna Sabine and Michael Lilley, says,

“I am keen to raise awareness of Ryde Town Council and how it can serve its community just as much as I am keen on becoming a councillor.

“I am not ashamed to admit I didn’t know what the council was for, or who my local councillor was.

“I would love to engage more people in our community discussions and give us all a sense of involvement in our Town that we love so much.”

Find out more by visiting the Our Ryde Website or Facebook page.

Tuesday, 6th April, 2021 9:02am


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Filed under: Election, Isle of Wight News, Politics, Ryde, Isle of Wight, Top story

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9 Comments on "‘Our Ryde’: Residents step up to the plate to support and help their community"

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Eagle eye

Let’s hope you are ALL elected and Ryde keeps moving forward.

We need to get back to Town and Parish councils being in control of their ward.

We need to scrap party political County Councillors, with only some officers and staff retained at a much smaller central office. Roll on May.

As the IW Council is doing less and less for the Island with some responsibilities being picked up by the Town and Parish Councils it seems only right that we should be paying less council tax. It is disingenuous of the IWC to pretend that council tax rises are kept to below 5% (as an example) when the actual rise is far more as they are progressively… Read more »
@Colin You should remember that central government cuts the funds made available to local government every year. The council has statutory obligations that it must by law fulfil, if it has less money it has little choice but to cut services and raise money by increasing council tax and other items such as car parking fees for instance. Please note I am not making excuses for the… Read more »
Eagle eye
Hialtitude, Whilst I agree with most of your comments, and with respect, you have failed to recognise that the current cabal gave themselves a pay rise at our expense. They are, in my opinion, the worst tory council we have ever had, especially when you know that it is unelected officers who are running County Hall. Residents are currently paying for two governing systems, Local Councillors and… Read more »
@Eagle eye I wish to stress what I wrote in my earlier comment. ‘Please note I am not making excuses for the IoW council, I merely wish to highlight their funding dilemma.’ You may rest assured that I greatly desire to see the current incumbents replaced. A couple of things that come to mind that I find deeply distressing include: Not supporting free meals for disadvantaged children.… Read more »
@hialtitude. I am well aware of this. It started many years ago because the Tory government got frustrated by mainly Labour councils using money to further their own agenda. The idea was to try and reign in the spending on vanity projects and socialist policies that went against the mantra of the government of the day. And then various governments managed to waste so much on their… Read more »
Nice piece of opportunistic canvassing and self promotion ably supported by ‘On the Wight’. Under Michael Lilley and Phil Jordan we have seen Ryde Town Council establish one of the biggest hikes in Council Tax this year whilst they pursue huge and expensive acquisitions such as the Town Hall; St Thomas’s Church; the Vectis Hall; Ryde Harbour and now it is proposed a £40k investment in Michael… Read more »
Eagle eye
During “purdah” I guess all candidates are fair game but I don’t understand why you feel it necessary to make disparaging remarks about OntheWight publishing the article. I personally find OntheWight to be the most conscientious news publisher on the island. With regards to the increase in Ryde’s precept I think taking over neglected buildings and putting them back in order to generate future income is a… Read more »
Eagle eye
Brockbadger During “purdah” I guess all candidates are fair game but I don’t understand why you feel it necessary to make disparaging remarks about OntheWight publishing the article. I personally find OntheWight to be the most conscientious news publisher on the island. With regards to the huge increase in Ryde’s precept I think taking over neglected buildings and putting them back in order to generate future income… Read more »