VOTERS are “fed up” with Labour’s dominance of Greater Manchester politics, according to the Liberal Democrat mayoral hopeful.
Jane Brophy, the only woman standing in the May 4 election, says that she would bring a more inclusive form of leadership to the city-region’s top role.
Ms Brophy, a councillor in the Trafford ward of Timperley, has vowed to use the mayoral job to fight against a ‘Hard Brexit’, oppose development on green belt land, and improve mental health treatment across the region.
The Lib Dems have seen their electoral power in Bolton decrease substantially over recent years — being the largest party in 2004, but now holding just three seats.
However, Ms Brophy believes her party is in for a resurgence.
She said: “I think the Liberal Democrats as a party are starting to rise. Since the last election and post-Brexit we have gained a lot of younger members who are very enthusiastic.
“I think over time you will see more and more Lib Dem councillors being elected in Bolton again.
“The Liberal Democrats represent something different to Labour and the Conservatives.
“People are fed up with having nine boroughs in Greater Manchester controlled by Labour.”
Ms Brophy has been highly critical of the running of the consultation over the spatial framework, the housing blueprint outlining plans for thousands of new homes in Bolton by 2035.
She added: “People aren’t happy with the top-down way of governing with little consultation, which has shown up in the Greater Manchester Spatial Framework.
“We do believe in local consultation. At the moment a lot of money is wasted on consultations that mean nothing, but we would actually listen to local people and have decisions made by local partnership boards.
“We want to build on all the brownfield sites and try to change government legislation so that it is much easier to do that.
“We want to build upwards in areas that have the right infrastructure.
“I would be using the mayor’s powers to make it easier to build in the areas where homes are really needed.”
The Lib Dem candidate has also pledged to bring about transport reform, with expanded services, better cycle links, and an all-in-one ticketing system for buses, trams, and trains.
She said: “I would like to connect everything together and make sure that the trams, trains, and buses all run on one ticketing service.
“Another main priority is to reduce congestion and the way to do that is to make public transport work for people.”