Chief reporter's comment: We're all sick of Brexit but please do vote
PUBLISHED: 12:14 03 May 2019
The people of Cranham will be heading to the polls next week to mark a Havering Council by-election.
Here at Recorder Towers, we've had a fair few phone calls this week from people confused about whether or not Havering was affected by Thursday's nationwide local elections.
It is not, as a London borough (in terms of politics at least... We all have our own thoughts about whether we're in Essex or not) we held our local elections last May.
However, it's looking increasingly likely there will be elections for us all to take part in later this month – European ones.
I'm not going to dissect whether or not we should even be having them, and I'm certainly not going to tell anyone how to vote, but please, if we do hold European elections on Thursday, May 23, get out and vote in them.
I know many of us are sick of any talk of poltiics. But as my nan used to tell me every time any kind of election rolled around, people died for our right to walk into a polling station, tick any box we choose and walk out again knowing that in some small way we've had our say.
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Thursday's by-election in Cranham is only being held because of the tragic and untimely death of Councillor Clarence Barrett - the former head of the Upminster and Cranham Residents' Association.
During my time here at the Recorder I got to know Clarence quite well, and he was very much one of the good ones.
The last time I saw him was at last year's Remembrance Day parade in Upminster – a request for a quick quote for the paper turned into a much lengthier chat about Spurs, the state of the town's roads and his plans for an alternative budget.
There isn't much more I can add to the moving tributes that have been paid to him already.
So all I will say is that whoever is voted into power to represent the people of Cranham this week has very large shoes to fill.