Last year, Sam Carling became the only Cambridge student to be elected onto the council in recent yearsVarsity

Campaigning has got under way for the councillor elections for Cambridge City Council that will take place as part of the local elections on Thursday 4th May.

Fourteen of the 42 council seats will be contested in the election, with three of the elections taking place in wards with a large student presence – in the Castle, Market and Newnham wards. Labour currently have control of the Council, holding 29 seats compared to 9 for the Liberal Democrats, three for the Green Party and one independent councillor.

Students can no longer register to vote, as the deadline passed this Monday (17/04). For the first time, voters will also need identification in order to exercise their voting rights. Passports and driving licences are the two most commonly accepted forms of ID. The number of accepted forms of ID is especially restricted for young people and students – as bus passes and old age Oyster cards are among the additional forms of identification that will be accepted for older people.

Voters can still apply for free for a Voter Authority Certificate if they do not have a passport or driving licence – the deadline to apply in time for the local elections is next Tuesday (25/04).

Seven current Cambridge students are standing in the local election. Chang Liu, Archie McCann and Anthony Martinelli are standing for the Liberal Democrats. Liu is standing in Newnham ward – home to many students who live west of King’s Parade, including Queens’, King’s, Selwyn and Robinson colleges. Martinelli is standing in Market ward, which also has a high student population in central Cambridge including Corpus Christi, Pembroke and Downing colleges. McCann will stand in Cherry Hinton ward in east Cambridge.

Three students are also standing for the Green Party. Dan Kittmer and Esmé Hennessy will both contest Castle ward – which is home to students from Churchill, Fitzwilliam and Murray Edwards colleges. Joshua Morris-Blake will also represent the Greens in Petersfield ward.

The Cambridge Union’s Easter term president, James Appiah, is also standing for the Conservative Party in the Market ward.

Last year, Sam Carling became the only Cambridge student to be elected onto the council in recent years, as he was successful when he ran as a member of the Labour Party in West Chesterton ward.

Esmé Hennessy - Green Party - Castle Ward

Green councillors present the only credible path to a sustainable Cambridge, prepared to challenge the endless pro-growth status quo of the Labour council in favour of prioritising people and our environment. Greens are not governed by the party whip, and so are not forced to vote along party lines on issues which may be detrimental to our city. I want to join our Green councillors in finding concrete solutions to the pollution in the vulnerable river Cam, divesting Council funds, and prioritising our environment and wellbeing; a green day that isn’t just for the recycling of old ideas.

Chang Liu - Liberal Democrats - Newnham Ward

Like so many young people, I feel let down. While the Tories wreck our country, the Labour Party act as a rubber stamp to everything they do – abstaining on Trans Rights, Voter-ID and the SpyCops Bill. Cambridge Labour voted down solutions to tackle mould in council homes; let bike theft get out of control. The average age of a local councillor is 60, so I’m not surprised that young people are unrepresented. I will fight for our priorities like tackling the housing, climate and cost of living crisis. So if you’re dismayed at the state of politics, use this election to send a message.

Dan Kittmer - Green Party - Castle Ward

The City Council is currently pursuing an agenda of endless economic growth, which only the Greens are standing up against. Listening to residents on doorsteps, there’s huge concern that many in Cambridge are being left behind. On the City Council, I want to reconnect people with their representatives, especially marginalised communities and students. Greens are working hard for Cambridge, from better bike lanes and street lighting to bringing a “conversion therapy” ban to the council. I want to help sure Greens to continue delivering for Cambridge and strengthen the voice of young people on the council.

Anthony Martinelli - Liberal Democrats - Market Ward

I’m standing for election in Market Ward, which includes many of the city centre colleges, because I believe Cambridge can be a global power for good and local government is critical to making this happen. I’m currently finishing my PhD at Caius having completed medical school here a few years ago and I represented Market as a councillor from 2018-21. I helped push the Council to declare a climate emergency and campaigned on rough sleeping, building affordable housing and air pollution. I will work to ensure student priorities are not overlooked by the City Council and hope I can win your support!

Joshua Morris-Blake - Green Party - Petersfield Ward

The Green Party have been challenging the business-as-usual approach of the Labour-dominated city council, working hard on behalf of students and residents through the cost-of-living crisis and pushing the council to go further in tackling the climate and nature crises.

If elected in Petersfield, I want to prioritise creating a fair and green transport system, building more zero-carbon, affordable housing in the city by expanding the council’s retrofitting scheme, and furthering renters’ rights - we need the Council to get on with implementing a landlord licensing scheme to protect the city’s renters. I support ACORN’s ‘Ban the Slumlords’ campaign and will push the council to provide more concrete plans as soon as possible.


Mountain View

University duty of care campaign to be considered for debate in Parliament

More Labour councillors won’t make a difference here. In Petersfield, the Green Party are best placed to hold the council to account, stand up for our most vulnerable residents and build a fairer, greener city.

Archie McCann - Liberal Democrats - Cherry Hinton Ward

Cambridge Liberal Democrats are pushing for a fairer, greener, and more liberal city. We all proudly stand up for trans rights, for refugees, for unpaid carers, for renters, for students, for victims of racism, and for anybody who hasn’t been given a fair deal. I’m running for election to make sure that the people who are so often unrepresented get a voice, and to push the City Council to do what’s right for Cambridge on the basics: to build more homes and speed up repairs to council homes, to improve public transport, keep public toilets open and help rough sleepers.