Logo of the Green Party of England and Wales, depicting a green Earth with petals surrounding three-quarters of the globe

Prospective Parliamentary Candidate Selected

2 October 2019

We are very pleased to announce that Matt Buckler has been selected as our PPC for the Derbyshire Dales constituency. Many thanks to Richard and Matt and all those who helped us to run the hustings and selection process. If anyone is interested in helping with our campaign for Matt, then please come to one of our meetings (for details see the events page)

Matthew Buckler

Matthew Buckler

I have been a member of the Derbyshire Green Party for about 10 years, having grown completely disillusioned with the Labour Party under Tony Blair and Gordon Brown. I was the membership officer for about two years, between 2017 and 2019. I stood down having been elected as a District Councillor for Stanton Ward in the Derbyshire Dales and a Town Councillor for Riber and Starkholmes on Matlock Town Council. I chair the

 Matlock Town Council climate change working group. I was the Green Party general election candidate in 2017, and worked with others to get a Unity candidate, unsuccessfully on that occasion.

I worked for the Peak District National Park Authority for 15 years, leading the highly successful conservation team restoring peatlands across the southern Pennines with the Moors for the Future Partnership. During this period, I worked on lots of projects which demonstrated our inter-relationship with the natural world, looking at water quality, flood risk reduction and carbon storage. I developed a good understanding of working at a landscape scale, biodiversity, ecosystem services and natural capital. I am an ecologist and currently work for the Derbyshire Wildlife Trust, working in partnership with others to bring nature back in the Trent Valley and Dark Peak. I started campaigning on environmental issues in the 1980's, writing submissions to the Stop Hinkley Expansion public enquiry and working for Greenpeace Australia, raising funds and campaigning to stop whaling and forest clearance.

We are living in a time of crises: social, environmental and political. Our current political system is not working and the environment is collapsing around us. This is not only about the climate emergency, which is the most imminent existential threat, but also about the collapse of biodiversity, air pollution, plastics in the ocean, food waste and shortages and deteriorating water quality. We have a global elite who benefit from this destruction and are protected from it by their rising wealth, whilst others are using food banks and dying in the street. We need a fairer, more equitable society, which does not allow this to happen. This situation is dependent on our current political system, with its unwritten constitution and unfair electoral system.

If selected, my primary objective would be to develop a coalition of all parties in the Derbyshire Dales who can agree on ending austerity, working towards reducing the worst impacts of climate change and reforming the political system through the selection of a Unity candidate.

Video of Matt Buckler's presentation at the hustings

Nominations for Derbyshire Dales Green Party Parliamentary Candidate

We have two members who have put themselves forward to be our candidate: Matthew Buckler and Richard Rowlett. Below are their biographies and videos of the hustings, held on Thursday 12 September 2019. Voting will close on midnight Thursday 26th September. We will be sending out an online vote to every member for whom we have an email address. Members with no email addresses will be sent a postal vote.

Richard Rowlatt

Personal Manifesto. The Green Party of England and Wales recognises the full enormity and urgency of

A radical reform programme is urgently needed, and plans laid down for a new economic system and new society in the post-carbon world. This programme would be accompanied by considerable redistribution of wealth and income. Every adult British citizen would be entitled to draw a basic living wage. The excessively rich will be subject to heavy taxation.

Efficient local government must be restored. Radical constitutional reform should devolve government of domestic affairs to English regional parliaments, on a par with those of Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, while the bloated Whitehall apparatus should be drastically trimmed and deal with purely external affairs. Regional governments would raise taxes, and would have the power to withhold taxes to the central government in Whitehall.

The harmful trade in addictive drugs should be controlled and used as a source of taxation by legalising, monopolising, nationalising their sale.

White elephant projects, such as the Trident replacement submarine, third Heathrow runway, Hinckley Point, HS2 etc, must be cancelled.

Cancel Brexit

Brexit is unworkable and Ireland is the sticking point. If there was a solution to this problem it would have been found by now. Article 50 must be revoked as soon as possible. Politicians who are still convinced that the UK should leave the EU should devise a workable plan and put it to parliament. No referendum, no more delay. Just do it.

Climate Change

Dealing with climate change is the absolute priority.

The UK government must end all subsidies to oil companies and urge all other governments throughout the world to do the same.

In Whitehall, the department for climate change must be independent from other departments. All policies must be based on sound scientific evidence. To that end an institute free from the meddling of politicians should be set up with two aims:

  1. To coordinate the work of agencies measuring sea-levels, land movements, weather patterns, levels of atmospheric CO2 etc, and
  2. To carry out meta-analysis of research papers published internationally relating to global warming.

With these data increasingly accurate predictions can be made about future catastrophes; for instance, when, (not if) London will be flooded. The findings will be updated and published annually, and the government obliged to take precautionary measures accordingly.

The process of phasing out oil, gas, coal and imported biomass will be underpinned by a steadily increasing hydrocarbon fuel tax until it is cheaper to run machines and heat living space with renewable energy. The tax burden could be offset by lowering other taxes.

Food self sufficiency and the environment.

  1. Land that is suitable for growing food for humans must not be used for growing animal feed. Animal feed must not be imported from abroad. Animals must be grazed on non-arable land.
  2. The soil must be protected from degradation. Enhancing the subsoil will improve fertility, reduce the need for artificial fertilisers and act as a carbon sink.
  3. An area such as Derbyshire should aim to be self-sufficient in basic foodstuffs (carbohydrate, protein and lipids), exporting the surplus and but at the same time preserving and enhancing and the environment
  4. The EU common fisheries policy should be to:
    • Protect, restore and improve the damaged sea bed, so that depleted fish stocks can recover and thrive. Dredge trawling must be permanently banned throughout the North East Atlantic continental shelf, from Iceland to Morocco. Fishing communities have the right of first refusal to fish their own waters, but also are obliged by law to preserve fish stocks.
    • Ban unsustainable and polluting activities such as salmon farming.
    • Use armed force, if necessary, to capture rogue trawlers, confiscate the catch and prosecute the owners.
  5. Upland areas, as in Derbyshire, must be re-wilded, burning of heather banned, peat bogs and forests restored. This will help in increasing the carbon sink, restore fertility to the soil and aid flood prevention and control. Landowners who flout these rules must be punished with all the force of the law, and rogue foreign landowners identified and banished from the UK

Parliamentary reform

The bloated Whitehall apparatus of government (Parliament and civil service) must be reformed root-and-branch and replaced by a “lean, mean machine”, while re-affirming the principles of representative parliamentary democracy. The two-party first past the post system and the confrontational lay-out of the debating chambers must be replaced. The Place of Westminster must be vacated permanently.

The Westminster Government is confined to foreign affairs, defence, currency, communications etc.

There is not enough space for me to expand my ideas on reforming:

Richard Rowlatt, 14/09/2019

Video of Richard Rowlatt's presentation at the hustings

General information