About Kerry Pollard
Kerry has lived most of his life in St Albans, brought up his family here and worked in the public and private sector locally, resigning as CE of a Housing Association before taking his seat in Parliament.
He was a member of St Albans District Council for 16 years and Herts County council for eight years and the city’s MP from 1997 to 2005.
With his children all educated in state schools, education and the well being of young people has been a major interest of Kerry’s. “I served on the Education Select Committee in Parliament at a time when major advances were made in Education”. Kerry is chair of governors of Batchwood special school which recently gained an outstanding Ofsted rating. Over the years he was also a governor at St Adrians, Mandeville, Marlborough, Francis Bacon and Beaumont schools.
St Albans Young Volunteers, which he founded in 2013, enables young people who wouldn’t normally volunteer to gain recognition for volunteering as well as getting help with their CVs.
The link which he established between Beaumont school and the German Parliament has given English students chance to have a week’s work experience at the Bundestag. As a magistrate in the city, he specialised in youth justice.
As a trustee, Kerry maintains contact with Open Door Night Shelter which he set up in 1994. He is currently a trustee of Vincent’s Charity which provides flats for ‘people in necessitous circumstances’ in the city.
He recently visited Pakistan and previously founded St Albans Racial Equality Council and established St Albans’ town twinning link with Sylhet in Bangladesh.
NHS: I have been active in the ‘999 Call for the NHS’ campaign which is drawing attention to the huge changes that have taken place in the NHS since the Coalition came to power.
FOX HUNTING: I was proud to support the banning of Hunting when I was MP for my home city of St Albans. I am sorry that there have been no prosecutions since the Bill became law and now we hear that the Tories are considering repealing the Act – A&E crisis, uncertainty about the economy, terrorism, housing crisis and they want to waste time on the repealing of the hunting act – beggars belief!
COUNCIL HOUSE RENTS: The Tory led Council have made much of freezing Council Tax whist at the same time putting up Council House rents by 2%, the majority of tenants are at the lower end of the income scale. When I was portfolio holder for Housing in my first year I instituted a rent freeze – the Tories should have done the same this year.
AFFORDABLE HOUSING: At one of our street stalls we featured ‘Affordable Housing’ – this defined as housing with rents that the majority of people could afford without needing housing benefit, generally agreed to be at no more than 55% of market rents. We had a questionnaire that we asked people to fill in and pop into our ‘ballot box’.
Overwhelmingly the result was to support my call for more affordable homes.
Currently we spend £33Bn on housing benefit without one brick being laid as a result of this huge amount of expenditure – if we INVESTED half that in new build we could construct 100,000 genuinely affordable homes – less on benefit, new homes that would house several generations, dignity restored to those not needing to ‘apply’ for housing benefit – BENEFIT to BRICKS