THOSE were the telling words of one of the campaigners against the axing of Tilbury Ferry at the full council meeting on wednesday night. On the back of the facebook campaign, Ian Heffron has decided to stand as an Independent for the Tilbury St Chads ward this May.
Ian’s words are significant. In less than two weeks a facebook campaign with just under 2,000 members was formed with members from all over the world. Sound familiar? Corringham Car parking charges? Same thing, same effect.
What was interesting was that both Portfolio Holder Neil Rockcliffe and Cllr Rob Gledhill both made extremely valid points about the loss of the Dartford Crossing subsidy. They made the point, thirty days too late. The information ship had sailed. They may well be right but they have lost control of the argument.
It is for these very reasons that the council was skewered by the government on it’s communications skills. YourThurrock is set to work with other proactive councils who realise that the day of social media/a camera in your face is here and they want to be ready. They believe that the “glum councillor” picture and two lines in the local rag simply doesn’t cut it anymore. Indeed, with 109 local rags closing down last year, for some areas there isn’t even that.
As you can already see, yourthurrock has been out interviewing ministers, prospective candidates, sitting councillors and prospective ward councillors. From April 6th until the last count is returned we will be out in every street interviewing the public and putting those interviews in youtube, twitter and facebook.
Remember, yes The Sun has 3 million readers but facebook has 15 million users in the UK alone. We are not saying it is the answer but you have to respond to the changes and adapt.
We are still happy to put pictures of councillors pointing at potholes or two line quotes a month after the event. We will archive them in the history section.
Thurrock Council has been mulling greatly on its communication strategy.