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Positive responses from supporters and public as top Greens visit Mid Suffolk

Hosts and visitors alike enjoyed a two-day visit to Suffolk on 9th and 10th February, by Caroline Lucas MP and Green Party Co-leader Adrian Ramsay.

Starting with a packed meeting at the John Peel Centre on the Thursday evening, Adrian and Caroline tackled the urgent climate, biodiversity and cost of living issues of the day and answered questions from the audience. They both paid tribute to the growing success of the local Mid Suffolk Green Party and met candidates for the elections this May. Caroline told supporters that it was very realistic that the local party could take control of Mid Suffolk Council, adding,
“I really do feel that there is massive momentum with the Green Party here in Suffolk just now. There is definitely a spring in the step.”

Caroline stayed the night in Haughley Green, birthplace of the organic movement and home for many years of the Soil Association.

Friday morning was spent in Elmswell, starting at the recently restored and extended Wesley Hall, now home to an excellent café and renewably-heated by ground source pumps. On a walk around the village led by Councillor Sarah Mansel, filmed by the BBC, they both saw the impact of rapid and excessive housing developments. At the Clayfields eco-home project, now 12 years old, Caroline planted a tree to extend the orchard and was interviewed for the Politics East show.

Lunch at Alder Carr Farm, Needham Market, was an opportunity to see the range of small businesses that operate there, some powered by renewable solar electricity. The afternoon was spent in villages which are part of the new Waveney Valley parliamentary constituency, where Adrian will be the candidate. Adrian said,
“It was great to show Caroline around the constituency, meeting local people and seeing how much local Green councillors are achieving. We are both confident of seeing even more Greens representing local communities here following the election in May.”

In Mendlesham Councillor Andrew Stringer was able to show Caroline and Adrian the thriving village shop, including the recently relocated Post Office. Returning to Cotton, where 14 years ago Caroline planted a tree in the then newly established Carter’s Meadow community woodland, the now fully-grown tree was admired by the visitors who reflected on the growth of the local Green Party from 2 to 12 councillors during the same period.

Cowpasture Lane, Mellis, gained notoriety 40 years ago when a 300 metre part of this ancient and probably prehistoric route was grubbed out despite widespread resistance from locals and a range of experts. Councillor Rowland Warboys explained that agreement has at last been reached to reinstate the track, along which livestock were formerly driven to market. Caroline and Adrian were both able to plant a tree to show their support for restoring the hedges bordering the lane.

Finally, the former and current leaders of the Green Party chatted to locals in the historic market town of Eye – a location with special resonance as the very first constituency ever contested by the Green Party (then the Ecology Party) with candidate Edward Goldsmith.