Archive

A library of past articles, published work, documents, statements and content from Zac Arnold.

Timeline established for the handling of data security and access concerns at Lydney Town Council | Zac Arnold

In a letter to the Mayor and Deputy Mayor of Lydney and the Town Clerk of Lydney Town Council on 10 July 2021, Zac outlined the timeline he plans to work to with regards to severe concerns about the handling, security and lawful right of access to data the Council holds: “I’m writing further toContinue reading “Timeline established for the handling of data security and access concerns at Lydney Town Council | Zac Arnold”

The fight to replace McCluskey at Unite is pivotal for the Labour movement | Zac Arnold

In two days time, 5 July 2021, voting papers will be dispatched to members in the election of the next General Secretary of Unite the Union. Whoever wins will replace Len McCluskey, a strong man for the Labour Party’s left wing in securing Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership, who has been in place since 21 November 2010.Continue reading “The fight to replace McCluskey at Unite is pivotal for the Labour movement | Zac Arnold”

Keir Starmer’s leadership is untenable as Leadbeater defies national trend | Zac Arnold

The Leader of the UK’s Labour Party, Sir Keir Starmer, is catching his breath after an unlikely by-election victory in Batley and Spen with the sister of assassinated MP Jo Cox, Kim Leadbeater, as their candidate. National nuisance and former Labour and Respect MP, George Galloway, tried to shift the campaign’s debate onto the diabolicalContinue reading “Keir Starmer’s leadership is untenable as Leadbeater defies national trend | Zac Arnold”

Batley should not be a signal of a strong leadership for Keir Starmer | Zac Arnold

If a swing of 3% from Labour is considered a win I’m concerned about how secure Keir Starmer is going to feel after this result. If the same trend fell across the country in a General Election, Labour would have lost 11 seats – dropping even further below the worst result since 1935 in DecemberContinue reading “Batley should not be a signal of a strong leadership for Keir Starmer | Zac Arnold”

A year on from BLM Lydney, we need a proper Healing History Plan | Zac Arnold

A year ago, this week Lydney was divided over the Black Lives Matter demonstration in Lydney. The community remains divided and lessons remain unlearned. Lydney Town Council and its Trusts have a duty to heal these divides, acknowledge our history and promote strong community values going forward. In this light, a year on from theContinue reading “A year on from BLM Lydney, we need a proper Healing History Plan | Zac Arnold”

One year on: the BLM event that divided a Gloucestershire town | The Observer

In May 2021, Zac was interviewed exclusively by the The Observer about his thoughts on the aftermath of Lydney’s BLM demonstration and the impact it had in tackling racism in the Forest of Dean. The full un-edited interview reads: ‘I wouldn’t say I was surprised by the reaction to the BLM protest in Lydney. IContinue reading “One year on: the BLM event that divided a Gloucestershire town | The Observer”

Complaint lodged about alleged breaches of the Code of Conduct by the Lydney Town Council Finance Chief | Zac Arnold

Today, I lodged a complaint with the Monitoring Officer of Forest of Dean District Council outlining a number of alleged breaches of the members’ Code of Conduct by the Chairman of the Lydney Town Council Finance and Scrutiny Committee, Cllr Roger Holmes. The complaint consists of 3 pages with 7 pages of supplementary evidence andContinue reading “Complaint lodged about alleged breaches of the Code of Conduct by the Lydney Town Council Finance Chief | Zac Arnold”

Complaint lodged about alleged breaches of the Code of Conduct by the Mayor of Lydney | Zac Arnold

Today, I lodged a complaint with the Monitoring Officer of Forest of Dean District Council outlining a number of alleged breaches of the members’ Code of Conduct by the Mayor of Lydney, Cllr Walter Leach. The complaint consists of 7 pages with 72 pages of supplementary evidence and the allegations are summarised as follows: InContinue reading “Complaint lodged about alleged breaches of the Code of Conduct by the Mayor of Lydney | Zac Arnold”

LTC: Demand a Full and Independent Inquiry

After the Lydney Town Council by-elections in May 2021, Zac launched a social media and strategic interventions campaign to demand a full and independent public inquiry into the culture, structures, conduct, financial management and employment practices of Lydney Town Council, its members and employees from September 2018 to present. Zac had previously been calling forContinue reading “LTC: Demand a Full and Independent Inquiry”

Vote for a future where the people of Lydney are put first on May 6 | Zac Arnold

The past decade has been tough for the Lydney community, and residents had been shut out by a closed shop that didn’t listen to you and did not deal in transparency. At this election, you can make a choice to go back to the way things were by re-electing members of the last administration, orContinue reading “Vote for a future where the people of Lydney are put first on May 6 | Zac Arnold”

The priorities of Lydney Town Council are still not the priorities of the people | Zac Arnold

The decision by Lydney Town Council to award their employees a £500 bonus each is abhorrent as small businesses and the poorest in society suffer the most as a result of this pandemic.These employees who have been working from home, now believed to be on full pay, are already not experiencing the level of sufferingContinue reading “The priorities of Lydney Town Council are still not the priorities of the people | Zac Arnold”

Please abide by the new lockdown, protect the NHS and save lives | Zac Arnold

As the situation with Covid-19 continues to deepen and with an abject failure of leadership and competence to take the fight to this pandemic, our small collective actions are often the best we can hope for. Please abide by the new National Lockdown wherever possible, only leaving your home if absolutely necessary for your physicalContinue reading “Please abide by the new lockdown, protect the NHS and save lives | Zac Arnold”

Clap for Carers is a slap in the face to front line NHS staff | Zac Arnold

Whilst nobody deserves to receive abuse for something like this, Clap for Carers was always a slap in the face to front line NHS staff. Staff that have watched the same people that stand clapping and banging pots, soaked in their own self righteousness, go and vote for Governments election after election that deliver realContinue reading “Clap for Carers is a slap in the face to front line NHS staff | Zac Arnold”

I am ashamed to have shared a platform with Debbie Hicks | Zac Arnold

Over the past week the privacy and safety of patients and staff in Gloucestershire’s hospitals has been put at risk by the actions of a particular individual holding particularly unsavoury opinions. NHS staff are putting themselves at risk day in day out to protect lives whilst a minority of individuals with no respect for anyoneContinue reading “I am ashamed to have shared a platform with Debbie Hicks | Zac Arnold”

Coronavirus has made the need for two hospitals clearer | Zac Arnold

Coming on four years from the creation of HOLD – Hands Off Lydney and Dilke hospitals, NHS bosses in Gloucestershire are still determined to close Lydney and District Hospital and the Dilke Memorial Hospital. They do this to replace them with one new, single, smaller facility in Cinderford. This pandemic should have made things evenContinue reading “Coronavirus has made the need for two hospitals clearer | Zac Arnold”

HS2 Rebellion

HS2 Rebellion is an alliance of groups and individuals campaigning against HS2. HS2 Rebellion does not represent the protection camps and each camp is independent from each other. The protection camps have been around for many years and were originally set up by people from local communities who were affected by HS2. HS2 Rebellion isContinue reading “HS2 Rebellion”

The moral turmoil of the Deputy Mayor cannot be a distraction from the real issue | Zac Arnold

It doesn’t matter whether we are scared, human rights cannot be allowed to be trampled over by people in positions of authority who feel like they can do as they please. Too many times now, the leadership of the Mayor of Lydney has seemed, although good intentioned, often autocratic. The way in which this issueContinue reading “The moral turmoil of the Deputy Mayor cannot be a distraction from the real issue | Zac Arnold”

Lydney Town Council set to backtrack on withdrawal of support for BLM Lydney | Zac Arnold

Today, the Police have confirmed that for Lydney Town Council to prevent the BLM protest in Lydney this Saturday would be a breach of Article 11 of the Human Rights Act and would result in potential ‘legal ramifications against the Council. It is clear, both the decision of the Mayor to interfere with the enactmentContinue reading “Lydney Town Council set to backtrack on withdrawal of support for BLM Lydney | Zac Arnold”

He couldn’t breathe. We couldn’t speak. My resignation from Lydney Town Council | Cllr Zac Arnold

“In January 2019, I was unlawfully arrested for breach of the peace at Lydney Town Council for refusing to allow those in control of our town to escape scrutiny – simply by asking questions. On 14 January 2019, my human right to peacefully protest was ripped away by Lydney Town Council and Gloucestershire Constabulary. ThisContinue reading “He couldn’t breathe. We couldn’t speak. My resignation from Lydney Town Council | Cllr Zac Arnold”

Rooftop Housing Group, you are the master of your own destiny | Cllr Zac Arnold

This morning, I met with the Assistant Team Leader of Rooftop Housing Group’s Young Peoples’ Service in relation to a series of ongoing and unresolved issues that cause concern at the company’s supported accommodation project on Albert Streetin Lydney. Concerns about services: ✓ Increased anti-social behaviour and criminal damage to property;✓ A failure to actContinue reading “Rooftop Housing Group, you are the master of your own destiny | Cllr Zac Arnold”

Why I am resigning from the Labour Party and becoming an Independent | Cllr Zac Arnold

It is with the deepest of regret that I am writing this letter to you this morning, however I have come to the conclusion over an extended period of time that this is both the right and the necessary thing to do. Please accept this letter as formal notification of my resignation, with immediate effect,Continue reading “Why I am resigning from the Labour Party and becoming an Independent | Cllr Zac Arnold”

Pointless Lydney cycle-way improvements are risking lives and property | Cllr Zac Arnold

“The recent roadworks being completed across Lydney as part of the cycle way improvement scheme is a welcome consideration by HM Government and Gloucestershire County Council in attempting to increase the number of both residents and tourists cycling around our market town. Whilst the thought process behind this scheme shows a halfhearted and asphalt friendlyContinue reading “Pointless Lydney cycle-way improvements are risking lives and property | Cllr Zac Arnold”

Lydney Town Council need a full and independent public inquiry | Cllr Zac Arnold

I am pleased that the Independent Complaints Process that investigates Code of Conduct complaints regarding members has found that there is no case to answer regarding a malicious complaint lodged by the former Mayor of Lydney against myself. I would like to unequivocally deny allegations that I have conducted any campaign of harassment against anyContinue reading “Lydney Town Council need a full and independent public inquiry | Cllr Zac Arnold”

Statement regarding the resignation of the Mayor of Lydney | Cllr Zac Arnold

Unfortunately, last week, the Mayor of Lydney made the decision to resign from Lydney Town Council. This morning, in the local press, the former Mayor made comments that in my opinion must be addressed. In May, I was elected to Lydney Town Council with a mandate to create the real change necessary to undo theContinue reading “Statement regarding the resignation of the Mayor of Lydney | Cllr Zac Arnold”

Lydney’s challenging issues set to be tackled | Cllr Zac Arnold & Cllr Brian Pearman

‘On Monday 8 July 2019, Lydney Town Council laid the foundations to tackle two of the most serious and challenging immediate problems that Lydney faces. These being the lack of provision of services for young people aged up to 25 and the ever-increasing risk of imminent climate catastrophe across the globe. ‘At its Full CouncilContinue reading “Lydney’s challenging issues set to be tackled | Cllr Zac Arnold & Cllr Brian Pearman”

J4G: Justice 4 Grenfell

“Justice4Grenfell (J4G) is a community-led organisation, focused on the long-term goal of obtaining justice for the bereaved families, survivors, evacuated residents and the wider local community, collaborating with representative organisations. “J4G was set up a few days after the Grenfell Fire disaster and officially launched on June 19th 2017 with a silent walk. Together withContinue reading “J4G: Justice 4 Grenfell”

No hesitation in working to fulfil our promises to voters | Cllr Zac Arnold

Since my election in last month’s local elections, myself and our Labour Group have been working on radical and innovative proposals to rebuild Lydney into the thriving market town and gateway to the Forest of Dean that it once was. Lydney needs action to follow up on our words in order to ride the waveContinue reading “No hesitation in working to fulfil our promises to voters | Cllr Zac Arnold”

Thank you for lending me your vote for Lydney Town Council | Zac Arnold

“I am humbled by the level of support the voters of Lydney East gave me in the local elections, unfortunately we didn’t quite manage to grasp hold of a district council seat but we are making real progress and I think that is because Labour are the only party offering real change both nationally andContinue reading “Thank you for lending me your vote for Lydney Town Council | Zac Arnold”

Who is Zac and what are his commitments in today’s Town and District Council elections? | Zac Arnold

Zac has lived in Lydney his whole life and is a member of thecore group of the campaign to protect our hospitals and hasbeen standing up for Lydney on issues such as youthprovision and council spending. Our Environment. Fight to defend our climate from imminent catastrophe and pledge to protect the public forest estate fromContinue reading “Who is Zac and what are his commitments in today’s Town and District Council elections? | Zac Arnold”

We need an enhanced, powerful and far-reaching effort to protect the lives of our generation | Zac Arnold

Zac Arnold, Labour’s Candidate for Lydney East in tomorrow’s Forest of Dean District Council elections, is to call for a more “enhanced, powerful and far-reaching” effort to “protect the livesof a generation”. The proposals come in light of the death of well-loved Gloucestershire teen Callum Paskin who is believed to have passed away as aContinue reading “We need an enhanced, powerful and far-reaching effort to protect the lives of our generation | Zac Arnold”

Zac’s Town and District Council election campaign suspended for 24 hours | Zac Arnold

For the next 24 hours I will cease campaigning in memory of a friend Callum Paskin and fellow candidate David Humphreys (Green Party, Newent) both have sadly passed away in recent days. Solidarity and love to the families and friends of Callum and David. Both will be remembered for decades to come. Campaigning will resumeContinue reading “Zac’s Town and District Council election campaign suspended for 24 hours | Zac Arnold”

The Oakdale bus link and the messiah, Alan Preest | Zac Arnold

I write in response to the letter by Lydney Town Councillor Claire Vaughan in Vol 42 No 9 regarding the classification of the Oakdale Bus Link by Cllr Alan Preest as “sorted.” I find this letter amusing to say the least. The isolation of the Oakdale Estate, amongst various other issues within the development, hasContinue reading “The Oakdale bus link and the messiah, Alan Preest | Zac Arnold”

Letter to the CEO of Lydney Town Council regarding continued personal data disclosure | Zac Arnold

In a letter to Ms Jayne Smailes, CEO of Lydney Town Council, Zac said: I am appalled by the decision taken by Lydney Town Council to re-publish the press pack previously published on Thursday 21 February 2019. You have at least made the effort to remove the personal email addresses of some individuals, however someContinue reading “Letter to the CEO of Lydney Town Council regarding continued personal data disclosure | Zac Arnold”

Response to the removal of the press pack released by Lydney Town Council | Zac Arnold

In a letter to the CEO of Lydney Town Council, Zac said: Firstly, I would like to thank you for the removal of the press pack published on your website on Thursday 21 February 2019 containing confidential and personal data as a result of my letter to yourself earlier today. Unfortunately, the swift removal ofContinue reading “Response to the removal of the press pack released by Lydney Town Council | Zac Arnold”

Concerns about the disclosure of personal data by Lydney Town Council | Zac Arnold

In a letter to Ms Jayne Smailes, CEO of Lydney Town Council, Zac said: I am writing to you with regards to a selection of documents released to the press and public on Thursday 21 February 2019 by Lydney Town Council. These documents including a series of confidential emails, screenshots from social media platforms andContinue reading “Concerns about the disclosure of personal data by Lydney Town Council | Zac Arnold”

Response to Lydney Town Council’s press pack detailing complaints against me | Zac Arnold

This morning (Thursday 21 February 2019) Lydney Town Council released apress pack in response to recent events regarding the Clerk to the Council, Jayne Smailes, likening myself; another member of the public and an elected member of the council to the far-right terrorist responsible for the tragic murder of Jo Cox MP in an emailContinue reading “Response to Lydney Town Council’s press pack detailing complaints against me | Zac Arnold”

Response to the resignation of Councillor Kevin Greening | Zac Arnold

In response to a letter in a local newspaper by former Councillor, Kevin Greening, post his resignation from Lydney Town Council, Zac said: “I found the letter published in last week’s edition from the former Lydney Town councillor Kevin Greening regarding my “negative views” rather amusing to say the least. Firstly, I would like toContinue reading “Response to the resignation of Councillor Kevin Greening | Zac Arnold”

Forest of Dean Labour Chair responds to backlash over Parliamentary All Women Shortlist decision | Cllr Bernie O’Neill

Zac formatted and distributed the following press release on behalf of Bernie O’Neill, Chairman of Forest of Dean Labour Party. Bernie O’Neill, Chair of the FoD CLP, states: “I think it is important to put the record straight on the issue of the AWS, which the National party has decided we in the Forest ofContinue reading “Forest of Dean Labour Chair responds to backlash over Parliamentary All Women Shortlist decision | Cllr Bernie O’Neill”

Response from Forest of Dean Labour Party to the complaint lodged by Lydney Town Council | Cllr Bernie O’Neill

In a letter to Lydney Town Council regarding the complaint, later released by Lydney Town Council, Cllr Bernie O’Neill (Forest of Dean Constituency Labour Party Chairman) responds: “I note your correspondence dated 15 January regarding your complaint against Mr. Zac Arnold. Having taken advice from the National Labour Party I have to inform you thatContinue reading “Response from Forest of Dean Labour Party to the complaint lodged by Lydney Town Council | Cllr Bernie O’Neill”

The next Labour MP for the Forest of Dean will be a woman | Forest of Dean Labour Party

Zac formatted and distributed the following press release on behalf of the Forest of Dean Labour Party. “The next UK General Election will offer voters in the Forest of Dean a female Labour Candidate. Following a consultation exercise involving all four branches in the district and a decision by the party’s National Executive Committee it’sContinue reading “The next Labour MP for the Forest of Dean will be a woman | Forest of Dean Labour Party”

Complaint to the Labour Party regarding Shaun Stammers’ social media activity | Zac Arnold

“Dear Chair and Secretary, “I was appalled this evening to read a post published by Mr Stammers who currently holds the offices of Vice Chairman Policy, Joint IT/Media Coordinator, LGBT+ Officer and Chairman of Cinderford and Mid-Dean Branch this evening on his public Facebook page regarding the decision by the National Executive Committee, in consultationContinue reading “Complaint to the Labour Party regarding Shaun Stammers’ social media activity | Zac Arnold”

Lydney Town Council back down on threat to skatepark due to pressure | Zac Arnold & Cllr Roger Holmes

This evening (Monday 28 January 2019) Lydney Town Council’s Recreation Trust backed down on their consideration to demolish Lydney Skate Park due to a reluctant and active campaign led by our Youth Officer, Zac Arnold and Labour’s only current town councillor, Cllr Roger Holmes. “This is great news for the young people of Lydney whoContinue reading “Lydney Town Council back down on threat to skatepark due to pressure | Zac Arnold & Cllr Roger Holmes”

We must all condemn the actions of the few, and work to improve things for the many | Zac Arnold

Zac Arnold, Youth Officer for Forest of Dean Constituency Labour Party, said: “Yesterday (Friday 25 January), it was reported that the newly refurbished bridge across Dean Forest Railway from Lydney Boating Lake to St. Mary’s Church had been hit by an arson attack suspected to have been committed by young people. This is the latestContinue reading “We must all condemn the actions of the few, and work to improve things for the many | Zac Arnold”

Chris Williamson MP joins Forest of Dean Labour on the doorsteps of Lydney West | Zac Arnold

Throughout today Forest of Dean Labour Party have held a day of action across Lydney ahead of May’s local authority elections. This included a morning street stall and Councillor meet and greet followed by canvassing in Lydney West for Steve Stockham’s Town and District election campaign and a community meeting on a swathe of issuesContinue reading “Chris Williamson MP joins Forest of Dean Labour on the doorsteps of Lydney West | Zac Arnold”

Final decision from Labour Party HQ on the complaint lodged by Lydney Town Council | Tim Dexter

In an email to, then Executive Officer of Lydney Town Council and later Assistant Clerk, Carol Wheeler, Labour Party Complaints Officer Tim Dexter said: “Thank you for providing the additional information. “If Mr Arnold is attending these meetings as a private individuall and resident then this would not be a matter that the Labour PartyContinue reading “Final decision from Labour Party HQ on the complaint lodged by Lydney Town Council | Tim Dexter”

Lydney Town Council supply Labour Party HQ with additional information regarding their complaint | Carol Wheeler

In response to a request for more information from Tim Dexter, Complaints Officer for the National Labour Party at Southside, Carol Wheeler wrote to him as Lydney Town Council’s Executive Officer saying: “Mr Arnold openly publicises the fact the he is a Labour activist, the news article relating to this recent incident and indeed MrContinue reading “Lydney Town Council supply Labour Party HQ with additional information regarding their complaint | Carol Wheeler”

Lydney Town Council lodge formal complaint to the Labour Party | Cllrs Bob Berryman & Brian Pearman

“Dear Sir or Madam “We would like to make an official complaint against Mr Zac Arnold regarding his behaviour towards our Council/Council Members and Employees. “At our Full Council meeting last night Mr Arnold, under the Public Forum agenda item, asked three questions of our Council. Under our Council’s Standing Orders questions raised under theContinue reading “Lydney Town Council lodge formal complaint to the Labour Party | Cllrs Bob Berryman & Brian Pearman”

Heading for Extinction and what to do about it: a free talk | Zac Arnold

‘Our climate is at crisis point and we must act now. We see theclimate changing rapidly. We see the extinction of over 200 species aday. We face huge threats to our lives and the lives of our childrenand our grandchildren. But what can we do about it? ‘Extinction Rebellion Forest of Dean is the organisationContinue reading “Heading for Extinction and what to do about it: a free talk | Zac Arnold”

Regional Liaison sends submission of CLP to Labour Party HQ regarding All Women Shortlist | Sonia Wright

“The Forest of Dean CLP held their consultation meeting on Tuesday 18th December. The meeting was attended by approximately 24 members. Before the meeting branches in the CLP had the opportunity to discuss their views on whether the CLP should be an AWS or open selection- this was fed back to the meeting Lydney BranchContinue reading “Regional Liaison sends submission of CLP to Labour Party HQ regarding All Women Shortlist | Sonia Wright”

Foodbank Britain: How Universal Credit is hitting this rural area | Zac Arnold

Zac Arnold writes about the effects of the Tory policy in his Gloucestershire community. This article was originally published by Left Foot Forward on 10 December 2018, you can view the original here. The negative impacts that Universal Credit is having on ordinary people across the country is a path that has been walked plenty of timesContinue reading “Foodbank Britain: How Universal Credit is hitting this rural area | Zac Arnold”

Chris Williamson MP to visit Lydney in January 2019 | Zac Arnold & Cllr Bernie O’Neill

The Forest of Dean Constituency Labour Party is excited to announce that Chris Williamson MP for Derby North, former Shadow Minister for Fire and Emergency Services and former Shadow Minister for Communities and Local Government will be coming to Lydney as part of a day of action being held on Saturday 19th January 2019. TheContinue reading “Chris Williamson MP to visit Lydney in January 2019 | Zac Arnold & Cllr Bernie O’Neill”

Mindful of the Jo Cox case we do feel that this behaviour warrants noting ‘on file’ | Jayne Smailes

This email was not in the public domain and had not been seen by myself prior to Lydney Town Council publishing it in their press pack on 21 February 2019, not even the rest of the Councillors had seen it prior to 20 February 2019. In an email to Gloucestershire Constabulary; namely Sergeant Andrew Doyle,Continue reading “Mindful of the Jo Cox case we do feel that this behaviour warrants noting ‘on file’ | Jayne Smailes”

XR: Extinction Rebellion UK

Extinction Rebellion is an international movement that uses non-violent civil disobedience in an attempt to halt mass extinction and minimise the risk of social collapse. Our world is in crisis. Life itself is under threat. Yet every crisis contains the possibility of transformation. Across the world, heralded by the young, people are waking up and coming together. Continue reading “XR: Extinction Rebellion UK”

The Tories want the Forest to fail | Zac Arnold & Cllr Di Martin

On November 5 a meeting of the Forest Economic Partnership was held at the new Gloucestershire College Campus on Cinderford’s Northern Quarter. The FEP is a coalition of councils and other organisations working cross-border in both England and Wales to build a strong economy for the region and increase regeneration. The County Council’s representative isContinue reading “The Tories want the Forest to fail | Zac Arnold & Cllr Di Martin”

No money for a Youth Worker but £491.39 for a flag | Zac Arnold

On Monday evening I attended the Lydney Town Council meeting and note with great concern that decision by the council to purchase a flag with the town council crest to fly outside the council chamber at a cost of £491.39. In a time of continued austerity, where out high street is on the brink ofContinue reading “No money for a Youth Worker but £491.39 for a flag | Zac Arnold”

Lessons from Labour: The Hogan statement and membership accountability | Zac Arnold

This content is retrospective, meaning that it was written some time after the event took place. This post was written on Friday 16 October 2020, however it is tagged 9 November 2018 as this is when the event took place. It is an insight into the inner workings of the Labour Party and it’s aimContinue reading “Lessons from Labour: The Hogan statement and membership accountability | Zac Arnold”

HOLS: Hands Off Lydney Skatepark

Zac launched a political and media campaign against Lydney Town Council and Lydney Recreation Trust when it became public that they were considering demolishing Lydney Skatepark as a response to a minority of young people exhibiting anti-social behaviour. The campaign was successful in ensuring the skatepark remained and that CCTV was installed to tackle anti-socialContinue reading “HOLS: Hands Off Lydney Skatepark”

They said it was a consultation not a referendum… | Zac Arnold to iNews

The full edited interview after Zac spoke to Paul Gallagher for iNews read as follows: “We’ve had two consultations from the CCG and Gloucestershire care services – the first on whether we wanted to close the two hospitals and have a new single, smaller one: 46 per cent said no, 43 per cent said yes.Continue reading “They said it was a consultation not a referendum… | Zac Arnold to iNews”

Forest hospitals: The verdict? We fight on harder than before | Owen Adams & Zac Arnold

Today the Citizens’ Jury that was tasked to deliberate over one very difficult question – not whether or not we should keep or lose our hospitals (we are not allowed a say on that) – but the vague location of a new hospital (but not the site itself) decided on a verdict: Cinderford narrowly wonContinue reading “Forest hospitals: The verdict? We fight on harder than before | Owen Adams & Zac Arnold”

Our observations: Forest hospitals citizens’ jury Day 3 | Owen Adams & Zac Arnold

TWO COMMON THEMES OF THE DAY 1. Forest Routes community transport run by volunteers such as Dial-A-Ride (Lydney and Newent, plus Bream and Lydcare) are running at full capacity and facing a serious crisis due to proposed Government legislation which will force volunteer drivers and the charities to be licensed as commercial operators – andContinue reading “Our observations: Forest hospitals citizens’ jury Day 3 | Owen Adams & Zac Arnold”

Our observations: Forest hospitals citizens’ jury Day 2 | Owen Adams & Zac Arnold

Today, the Citizens’ Jury to develop a recommendation on the location of a new, community hospital continued on day 2 of 5. Two members of HOLD’s Core Group were observing, here is what we learned: THE KEY POINTS 1/ Friends of Lydney Hospital’s Tony Midgley said that if Lydney is not chosen for the newContinue reading “Our observations: Forest hospitals citizens’ jury Day 2 | Owen Adams & Zac Arnold”

Our observations: Forest hospitals citizens’ jury Day 1 | Owen Adams & Zac Arnold

Today, the Citizens’ Jury to develop a recommendation on the location of a new, community hospital began on it’s 5 day run. Two members of HOLD’s Core Group were observing, here is what we learned:   * On Friday the jurors will make a “recommendation” (not actual decision as, say the NHS Trust, they areContinue reading “Our observations: Forest hospitals citizens’ jury Day 1 | Owen Adams & Zac Arnold”

Gloucester Area Trade Union Council unanimously back the HOLD campaign | Zac Arnold

“A huge thank you to Gloucester Area Trade Union Council for unanimously endorsing the HOLD campaign. They also agreed to pass a recommendation to all union branches who are affiliated to the council suggesting that they do the same and pledge funds when they are needed. This is one huge step in getting trade unionContinue reading “Gloucester Area Trade Union Council unanimously back the HOLD campaign | Zac Arnold”

Legal, public and political efforts and positive, joint working in NHS campaigning | Zac Arnold with Aneira Thomas & Dr Tony O’Sullivan

Zac speaks about the “three-pronged” legal, public and political approach that HOLD was taking towards the campaign and how positivity and joint working across divides is the only way to succeed, on a panel alongside Aneira Thomas the first baby born into the NHS and Dr Tony O’Sullivan. The event was reported in the SwindonContinue reading “Legal, public and political efforts and positive, joint working in NHS campaigning | Zac Arnold with Aneira Thomas & Dr Tony O’Sullivan”

HOLD Campaign urges NHS to drop closure proposals, or face court battle | Zac Arnold

Speaking on behalf of the HOLD Campaign as Press Liaison, Zac said: The Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning Group and Gloucestershire Care Services NHS Trust will face a Judicial Review, funded and supported by the community of the Forest of Dean, when they make the decision to close Lydney and Dilke Memorial Hospitals. Or they could justContinue reading “HOLD Campaign urges NHS to drop closure proposals, or face court battle | Zac Arnold”

HOLD On The Road raises £526 for the hospital judicial review fund | Owen Adams & Zac Arnold

“Thanks everyone who came and played at the HOLD On The Road legal fundraiser last night at Westbury Hall, and thanks also to the Hall and Bar staff, as well as everyone who donated raffle prizes. We raised an impressive £526. We still need more and have less than a week to raise about £900?Continue reading “HOLD On The Road raises £526 for the hospital judicial review fund | Owen Adams & Zac Arnold”

Zac suspended from membership of the Labour Party for alleged uncomradely behaviour | Nareser Osei

In a letter to myself, Nareser Osei as Acting Head of Disputes at Labour Party Headquarters, said: Notice of administrative suspension from holding office or representing the Labour Party Allegations that you may have been involved in a breach of Labour Party rules have been brought to the attention of national officers of the Party.Continue reading “Zac suspended from membership of the Labour Party for alleged uncomradely behaviour | Nareser Osei”

Less than little support from Coleford for single hospital plan in Forest of Dean | Zac Arnold

“Great morning out petitioning at the Coleford Carnival of Transport. Only 2 people we stopped were for the plans to close Lydney and Dilke hospitals and replace them with a single, smaller, new facility. This is becoming a pattern now. Visit https://www.crowdjustice.com/case/holdourhospitals/ to donate and share… can we get another £60 today so we reach one-third ofContinue reading “Less than little support from Coleford for single hospital plan in Forest of Dean | Zac Arnold”

HOLD Campaign rockets towards a Judicial Review | Zac Arnold

HOLD (Hands Off Lydney and Dilke Hospitals) Community Campaign Group has now commenced proceedings towards a Judicial Review to challenge the lawfulness of the Clinical Commissioning Group’s (CCG) decision of 25 January 2018 to close both hospitals, replacing them with a newly built single site of unspecified location. Following an initial CCG’s proposal in 2017Continue reading “HOLD Campaign rockets towards a Judicial Review | Zac Arnold”

The decision to close.. is of great concern to me as a county resident, ex NHS employee and a Councillor in Gloucester | Cllr Deborah Smith

“The decision to close two of our local Community Hospitals, Dilke and Lydney in the Forest of Dean and replace with one smaller one has recently been made by Gloucestershire Care Services and the local Clinical Commissioning Group. It is of great concern to me as a county resident, ex NHS employee and a CouncillorContinue reading “The decision to close.. is of great concern to me as a county resident, ex NHS employee and a Councillor in Gloucester | Cllr Deborah Smith”

A definitely not public consultation | Zac Arnold

On Saturday 17th February the HOLD campaign launched their series of #PetitionStorm Events in Cinderford East. Since then, the campaign has hosted two more similar sessions at Wyedean Sixth Form Centre and,  most recently,  in Lydney East on Saturday 17th March. Zac Arnold, Press Liaison for the HOLD Campaign said: “The launch of our #PetitionStormContinue reading “A definitely not public consultation | Zac Arnold”

Launch of HOLD #PetitionStorm gets 450 signatures and 9 in 10 people backing two hospitals | Zac Arnold

“Thanks to everyone who helped with our #PetitionStorm today in Cinderford. We estimate between us all going door to door, outside the Co-op and in the street, we got approximately 450 signatures (exact figure to be confirmed), 9 out of 10 people were eager to sign and many expressed how much they were against the closures andContinue reading “Launch of HOLD #PetitionStorm gets 450 signatures and 9 in 10 people backing two hospitals | Zac Arnold”

A Valentines for our Community Hospitals | Zac Arnold & Louise Penny

Supporters of the HOLD (Hands Off Lydney & Dilke hospitals) campaign have delivered Valentine’s cards to the Dilke and Lydney Hospitals on behalf of all those who do not support the proposal by the Gloucestershire Care Services NHS Trust and Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning Group to close them – 58% in the recent consultation (46% no,Continue reading “A Valentines for our Community Hospitals | Zac Arnold & Louise Penny”

Deputy Chair breaks Cinderford Council ranks to back the HOLD Campaign | Zac Arnold & Cllr Andrew Knight

Zac Arnold, HOLD press liaison, said: “It’s great to have Councillor Knight on board” Cllr Andrew Knight, Deputy Chair of Cinderford Town Council, said: “My worry is that we will lose two vital community hospitals within the Forest and ultimately lose out. For this reason, I support the HOLD campaign as reinvestment in existing hospitalsContinue reading “Deputy Chair breaks Cinderford Council ranks to back the HOLD Campaign | Zac Arnold & Cllr Andrew Knight”

It’s a cost cutting exercise, one that could easily cost lives | Cllr Jake Lewis & Zac Arnold

Zac Arnold, Press Liaison for the HOLD Campaign, said: “Another Councillor has joined our ranks of supporters. Thanks to Cllr Jake Lewis of Tidenham Parish Council for backing the HOLD Campaign. It’s important that we fight to save our much-valued and much-needed hospitals in the Forest.” Cllr Jake Lewis, Tidenham Parish Councillor, said: “It’s becomingContinue reading “It’s a cost cutting exercise, one that could easily cost lives | Cllr Jake Lewis & Zac Arnold”

HOLD announce plans for legal battle against confirmed closure of Forest Hospitals | Zac Arnold

Yesterday (Thursday 25th January 2018) the NHS Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning Group and Gloucestershire Care Services NHS Trust held two back to back meetings in Coleford in the Forest of Dean to discuss and decide whether the proposal to close the two community hospitals in the Forest of Dean would go ahead despite the proposal receivingContinue reading “HOLD announce plans for legal battle against confirmed closure of Forest Hospitals | Zac Arnold”

I fully support HOLD… the people want to keep the Dilke and Lydney hospitals | Cllr Jackie Fraser

Forest of Dean District Councillor, Jackie Fraser, said: “I fully support the HOLD Campaign. Our two community hospitals offer excellent services and 47 beds. GCS proposes one new hospital with half the number of beds and no inkling as to what services would be provided. “With the projected new housing to be built across theContinue reading “I fully support HOLD… the people want to keep the Dilke and Lydney hospitals | Cllr Jackie Fraser”

Backlash against Cinderford Labour Council over decision to back hospital closures | Zac Arnold

On Tuesday 9th January 2018 protesters gathered in the car park of the Belle Vue Centre in Cinderford in a display of anger and upset at the decision of Cinderford Town Council to support the ‘preferred option’ of the NHS to close Lydney and District Hospital and the Dilke Memorial Hospital and replace them withContinue reading “Backlash against Cinderford Labour Council over decision to back hospital closures | Zac Arnold”

Campaigners demand that the NHS scraps plans to close hospitals | Zac Arnold & Owen Adams

On Tuesday 9th January 2018 campaigners took to the steps of Shire Hall in Gloucester to demand that NHS Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning Group and Gloucestershire Care Services NHS Trust scrap their plans to close two community hospitals and replace them with one single, smaller, new hospital after 46% of consultation responses oppose the “preferred option”Continue reading “Campaigners demand that the NHS scraps plans to close hospitals | Zac Arnold & Owen Adams”

Gloucester Labour back HOLD as day of protest unfolds amid consultation outcome | Fran Boait

Fran Boait, Labour Parliamentary Candidate for Gloucester said on Facebook: “Today, HOLD – Hands Off Lydney and Dilke hospitals have been in Gloucester to protest against the Commissioning groups plans to close their hospitals. Their Protest continues this evening in Cinderford and Fran wanted to offer our support from Gloucester CLP and talk a little about why weContinue reading “Gloucester Labour back HOLD as day of protest unfolds amid consultation outcome | Fran Boait”

‘I felt elated that I’d done something’: first-time activists on a year of protest | The Guardian

In December 2017, Zac was interviewed exclusively by the Guardian about his introduction to the Labour Party, community activism and politics. The full edited interview reads: ‘Zac Arnold is 17 and studying for his A-levels. He is also part of the committee to save the Dilke and Lydney hospitals in the Forest of Dean. HeContinue reading “‘I felt elated that I’d done something’: first-time activists on a year of protest | The Guardian”

UC: Stop and scrap Universal Credit

Zac participated in numerous campaigning activities to stop and scrap Universal Credit, the new welfare benefits system in the UK, including street stalls and protests in Sedbury, Cinderford, Lydney and Gloucester. Get involved with the Scrap Universal Credit Alliance Sign up to get involved here: SUCA (list-manage.com)

HOLD: Hands Off Lydney and Dilke Hospitals

“Campaigning to retain at least two community hospitals in the Forest of Dean, against the sell-off and closure of the Dilke and Lydney hospital sites and demanding investment, not a single, smaller, new hospital.” The HOLD (Hands Off Lydney and Dilke hospitals) Campaign is a community campaign using direct action to retain the two CommunityContinue reading “HOLD: Hands Off Lydney and Dilke Hospitals”

Let’s Talk About…

In partnership with Lydney and Tidenham Labour Party, Zac established a community engagement campaign to create grassroots conversations on important local issues such as healthcare, youth services and Universal Credit. The campaign ran from September to December 2017 and tackled a new issue every two weeks involving tailored local literature in different areas, social mediaContinue reading “Let’s Talk About…”