Press Release: Residents’ Group Chair Dan Starr to take on Tory Leader Howard Rolfe in May District Election

Wednesday 4th March 2015, Saffron Walden: Residents for Uttlesford (R4U), the local party of towns and villages, has announced that co-founder of Residents for Uttlesford, Dan Starr, will stand against Conservative District Leader Howard Rolfe in the Ashdon Ward at the May 2015 Uttlesford election.

Cllr John Lodge, R4U Chairman Cllr John Lodge (R4U)
R4U party chair Cllr John Lodge said “The Conservative District Leader became unelectable in his existing Saffron Walden ward after overseeing the building of over 800 homes against the Town Council and residents’ wishes; so now he has been parachuted into a safer seat, forcing out a new local candidate. Residents don’t want their villages damaged or a party-political refugee; they want a councillor who will actually represent them. So we need to defend the ‘residents right to decide’ in this ward. As co-founder of Residents for Uttlesford, Dan Starr is the strongest leader for residents’ causes and we are excited to have selected him.”

The Uttlesford District ward of Ashdon includes the parishes of Ashdon, Hadstock and Sewards End.

Dan Starr (R4U) Dan Starr (R4U)
Dan Starr, the R4U prospective ward candidate said “I look forward to serving the needs of only locals if elected by the residents of the Ashdon ward. Our villages rely on the surrounding towns for many things. The expansion of Saffron Walden was forced through with scant regard for the needs of the nearby villages. Poor planning by the district council means that families have to compete for school places, it is hard to get doctors’ appointments, and Ashdon ward residents are disproportionally stuck in traffic as they try to access services in Saffron Walden. It is about time someone represented their interests rather than those of national parties, and I will do that.”

About Residents for Uttlesford

Residents for Uttlesford (R4U) is the local independent party of north-west Essex towns and villages. Formed in 2014 by a number of residents’ groups, the party believes that on local issues residents should decide, not Westminster parties. R4U’s success has been based on the desire to give local people a voice and implement long range strategic and sustainable plans for their area.

R4U leads Uttlesford District Council (UDC). In its first election in 2015 it became the second party at UDC. In the May 2019 R4U took majority control of UDC by gaining two-thirds of the seats. Since then it has set about re-engineering the now award-winning council operates, rebuilding the finances and fixing how planning is done. In 2021 the party won half the Essex County Council seats in Uttlesford district.

R4U also leads Saffron Walden Town Council, where under its stewardship the council has rebuilt finances, invested in community assets, and won multiple awards, including the best run council in Essex. It is a minority party on Great Dunmow Town Council.

Residents for Uttlesford can be found on the web at