Peterborough councillor leaves Labour Party to join Green Party

“I will continue to serve the Orton Longueville ward in order to improve the lives of people of the area.”
New Green Party councillor Heather Skibsted.New Green Party councillor Heather Skibsted.
New Green Party councillor Heather Skibsted.

Orton Longueville ward councillor Cllr Heather Skibsted has resigned from the Labour Party to join the Green Party group on Peterborough City Council.

Cllr Skibsted has become the city’s first Green councillor from outside of the Orton Waterville Ward and has restored the group to three seats on the council.

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The group, which also consists of Cllr Nicola Day and Cllr Kirsty Knight, was reduced to two last month with the resignation of Cllr Julie Stevenson to become an independent.

In a statement, Cllr Skibsted said: “I will continue to serve the Orton Longueville ward in order to improve the lives of people of the area. I want to continue to ensure that the voices of Orton Longueville’s residents are heard loud and clear by the city’s administration.

“I have been involved in many environmental and neighbourhood projects, demonstrating my absolute commitment to my local community. I will seek to continue this work beyond 2023.

“The Green Party’s policies and values can help create fairer greener communities. I feel I have found my home, because Green policies align much closer to my views and I feel part of a team working in the city’s interest with a spirit of collaboration. I am therefore delighted that the Green Party has welcomed me to join their strong team.

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“We are facing severe social and economic issues - inflation and a cost of living crisis - which are bearing down on low income families. We also continue to face a worsening climate crisis. Greens know that we can tackle the cost of living and the climate crisis in combination through, for example, insulating homes which will slash energy bills.”

Green Group Leader, Cllr Nicola Day added: “I am delighted that Cllr Skibsted has chosen to join the Green Party. She feels more aligned to Green Party policies and has been doing some great work in her ward on behalf of Orton Longueville residents which has included environmental and biodiversity work. In these times of extreme climatic crisis it has never been more important to have strong Green Party Councillors in local government. I wish her a warm welcome and look forward to working with her.”

The decision of Cllr Skibsted means than the current make-up of the council is: Conservatives 28, Labour/Labour and Co-operative 16, Liberal Democrats 8, Peterborough First 4, Green 3, Independent 1.