I was pleased to be able to meet a group of residents who had participated in a new initiative started by Beau Fadahunsi of the Sutton Race Equality Council and encouraged by Dennis Bartholomew on behalf of Sutton Council. They had all shadowed a councillor over a few weeks, attending meetings both in Council and also with residents. This gave them a real sense of the role that councillors play in the community and the relevance of the Council in residents’ everyday lives.

This meeting came at the end of the process when certificates were awarded to each participant. In our discussion, there was definitely a sense that they would take something away about politics. They were all more likely to vote as a result. Some were interested in becoming school governors, joining political parties and one may even stand as a councillor next time. All those meetings and we still didn’t put her off. Must be doing something right I suppose.