FOLLOWING the report on falling police numbers in the Standard two weeks ago, there was a short comment in your editorial tracing the reason for this to deep cuts in budgets made by the Conservative and Coalition governments, thereby causing this desperate reduction in our defences against crime. 

Now, many people voted for the Conservative candidate, Geoffrey Clifton Brown last June and in previous elections. Did they swallow the whole “we can’t afford public services” thing? If so, they can contemplate the meaning of “false economy” while awaiting their next house contents insurance premium. Is it a difficult connection to make, that cutting police budgets means fewer policeman and fewer policemen means more crime?

In the last 18 months, we’ve had chaos from the Tories, with the shambolic EU referendum, a coup-like leadership change, a bizarre decision to make the advisory referendum result binding, nine time-wasting months before the Article 50 declaration, followed by a pointless General Election, and finally the bribing of the Democratic Unionist Party to help them stay in power, much like David Cameron said Labour would need the SNP’s support in 2015... In the past, Tories claimed to be a “safe pair of hands.”

In 20 years of living here, I have seen no improvements attributable to Tory councils or to their MP. The outgoing leader of CDC could only say that his best achievement was keeping council tax down, so he must agree with this assessment. 

The Green Party’s aims for improving life for Gloucestershire people include reducing the impact of traffic, providing housing at reasonable rent and resisting cuts to local services – ideas which have not crossed the narrow minds of Cotswold Tories.

Instead they have closed children’s centres, downgraded libraries, sold off assets and reduced hospital services. Yet vast numbers still vote for them. They may be incompetents, but to Cotswold voters the Tories are still “our” incompetents!

Cotswold Green Party