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Holt Park residents press for poll booth rethink

Alan Mann and residents of Holt Park, who are worried the relocation of the local polling station from the old leisure centre to Adel Methodist Church which puts a steep hill in the way, which some are worried will deter the elderly from voting. 23rd April 2014. Picture : Jonathan Gawthorpe. JG100273a

Alan Mann and residents of Holt Park, who are worried the relocation of the local polling station from the old leisure centre to Adel Methodist Church which puts a steep hill in the way, which some are worried will deter the elderly from voting. 23rd April 2014. Picture : Jonathan Gawthorpe. JG100273a

VOTERS from Holt Park are urging council chiefs to think again about the relocation of their polling station.

Residents were expecting to be able to cast their votes at Holt Park Active, which replaced the leisure centre which had previously hosted the polling booths before it was demolished.

However, when polling cards dropped through letter boxes this month, the new location was given as Adel Methodist Church on Gainsborough Avenue – a mile away and at the foot of a steep hill.

Alan Mann, chairman of the Holt Park Tenants and Residents’ Association, said he was concerned the distance would be enough to put some off voting.

And he people were also worried the challenging gradient on the walk home could deter the elderly or anyone with mobility issues from making the trip to the new polling station.

He said: “I realise everyone has the alternative of a postal vote these days but some are wary of it and much prefer voting in person.

“It’s probably too late to change anything this year but we would like the council to look at this again before the next elections. Surely residents should have been given a say?”

A spokesperson for Leeds City Council did not rule out a rethink in future but added: “Representatives of the Returning Officer visited Holt Park Active to see if they had a room available; unfortunately, they were unable to provide a room with suitable access for those electors unable use stairs.”

 

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