AS the local elections draw closer, we spoke to residents to see who they would be voting for and why – and this is what they had to say.

In North Yorkshire on May 5, like many other regions, residents will be voting for who they would like to represent them among 90 councillors for the next five years.

The Northern Echo spoke to residents in Richmond about the upcoming local election next week set to bring the region into an age of a new unitary authority which will see all seven district councils merge into one unitary authority in April 2023.

The Northern Echo: Picture: CONNOR LARMANPicture: CONNOR LARMAN

Read more: What you should know about next week's local elections (especially if you're in this area)

Richard Hickman from Richmond said he will be voting and will most likely vote for the labour candidate as he “absolutely detests the conservative party.”

He added: “During lockdown, I got no help whatsoever from the Government, I run my own limited company so I was left out from support and I’ll never forgive them for it.

“I will never vote for them ever again in my life.”

When asked how he felt about North Yorkshire Council becoming a unitary authority in April 2023 he said he was “definitely against” it.

He said: “I’m definitely against the council becoming a unitary authority, there are local things happening at the moment such as talk of a development down at Easby Abbey and I think under Richmondshire council it might be a different decision, if it was a bigger council, they would go ahead with it.

“I’m a bit concerned about things like that about development and the impact it will have.”

A business owner of a sweet shop in Richmond who wanted to remain anonymous said they will be voting for and added that they were “undecided” as to their thoughts on the new unitary council at North Yorkshire County Council.

The Northern Echo: Picture: CONNOR LARMANPicture: CONNOR LARMAN

They added: “I think will be tricky for the likes of people who are used to working in Scarborough to understand the needs of Richmond I do think it’s a huge area, and it’s tricky and I know that a lot of people coming in from the local area have expressed their concerns as well.

“It’s such a big and diverse area so potentially it could be tricky.

When asked what they would like to see after the election they said they hope there will be “continued support for small business.”

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They said: “I just hope that whoever gets in local and for national, I hope they continue to support small business because it’s been tricky, certainly in the likes of Richmond, we need small businesses here to thrive.

The Northern Echo: Picture: CONNOR LARMANPicture: CONNOR LARMAN

“And in fairness, I feel that we are supported at the moment, I really feel we are.

“After the election, I just want to see continued support for business rates and with the council being supportive of what businesses need to do to thrive, such as being flexible about murals on walls and stuff like that.”

John Rey, from Richmond, said he wouldn’t be voting in the upcoming election as he doesn’t think “any of them deserve it really.”

The Northern Echo:

He added: “I do feel the potholes and everything need sorting out here, but generally I think it's okay.

“I mean, what can you do, the council tax going up and up and that’s the same everywhere so we’ll just see what happens really.

“I’m not really bothered about any changes, I don’t see any benefits from the election and just go about as normal.

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“I haven’t really noticed a difference in the last 30 years with any of them to be honest so unless I get that deeper involvement about what is actually happening then I probably would but I just plod along really.”


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