In his regular blog for Caerphilly Observer, Andrew Diplock, chair of Caerphilly Business Forum, looks back at the forum’s recent ‘Question Time event’.
Campaigners for the Assembly election on May 5 face that perennial problem – voter apathy. But they have the additional challenge of getting us to focus on local and Welsh issues rather than considering what the parties stand for at Westminster.
We’re familiar with what their policies are on the economy and foreign affairs because we hear it all the time through news outlets. But we don’t get nearly so much information on what candidates propose to do locally.
Caerphilly Business Forum’s Question Time event earlier this month tried to address this, with candidates quizzed on matters concerning businesses throughout the county borough.
We covered everything from the slow roll-out of superfast broadband to how to get more contracts for local businesses from publicly funded projects. It was a great success and firmly put local issues onto the agenda.
Well done to all involved and thanks to our candidates. The audience really tested them and were rewarded with a true insight into who would best represent Caerphilly.
The BBC also got involved again. It was the second time in three weeks they’d covered CBF events and they’re planning to do more with us this week. Just why are they so keen on Caerphilly?
I guess there are several factors. As far as the election is concerned, the individual candidates make us a very closely watched seat. The forum is also getting noticed and the media can see we’re well organised and have something important to say. They can also see we’ve got a good diversity of businesses here. And our proximity to Cardiff makes it easy for them to reach us … it all helps.
Perhaps we forget sometimes that Caerphilly has a lot going for it. I’m not saying we’re the centre of the universe, of course. But we’re getting there.
Chairman, Caerphilly Business Forum
For more information about Caerphilly Business Forum and its events call 029 2125 1395 or email firstname.lastname@example.org