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Mayor must make the Arena work for local people too

Mayor must make the Arena work for local people too.

Labour councillors will be demanding a number of improvements to the plans for the city’s new Arena to make sure the project brings benefits to as many people in Bristol as possible – including the neighbouring communities in Lawrence Hill and Windmill Hill wards.

In a statement to Cabinet this evening, Labour will ask that urgent action is taken to develop a transport plan for the arena, after councillors were recently told that no work has been done on this to date.

They will be asking for a commitment from the Mayor that the multi-million pound scheme will pay the Living Wage to all staff working there – both in the construction and operation phases, and also demand the same level of apprenticeships through the process that are being asked for from HS2 (High Speed Rail) saying that the Mayor should insist that one apprentice should be recruited for every £1 million invested.

Labour councillors will also say that the Arena project should not be exempt from the Community Infrastructure Levy.

“Local Labour councillors for Lawrence Hill and Windmill Hill wards, adjacent to the new proposed development, feel it is essential that their communities have a pot of money that they can use to address the impact such a large project will have on neighbouring areas,” said Cllr Helen Holland, Leader of Bristol’s Labour councillors.

“Bristol’s ambition for an Arena is one we all support and we do not want to see the Mayor miss this opportunity.”   

Lastly, after councillors won the argument recently that the Arena project should be debated in an open scrutiny meeting, Labour will ask the Mayor to agree to take all future decisions on the scheme at Cabinet meetings, and not behind closed doors by officers, as the report currently recommends.

Cllr Holland added, “To do our job properly, and hold the Mayor to account on this enormous public spend, all of Bristol needs to see that things are being done openly.”


Cllr Helen Holland -  0117 987 2238

or Labour councillors’ office - 0117 922 2013 or 07957 474865

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