CANDIDATES standing in the May local elections are to be quizzed by the Swindon Civic Trust.

The trust is sending a list of questions to every candidate standing in the 19 wards up for election on May 4, asking for their views on Swindon's future.

The nine questions cover topics from where a university should be built to how big the town should be allowed to grow.

Trust chairman John Monniot said the group hoped the questions and answers would reveal candidates' views on issues vital to the future of Swindon.

The trust has been campaigning since it was set up in 1992 to improve the town centre and working out ways to make the most of Swindon's heritage, as well as how to make it a greener place to live.

"We are doing this so that voters can make a more informed choice," Mr Monniot said.

"We think the issues we have chosen are vital for the future of our town. This is the first time we have done it in a systematic way.

"We will publish the answers we receive without comment as we are determined to keep out of party politics. We are not going to tell them who to vote for.

"We just want the candidates to start thinking about these issues."

The questionnaire will be sent out in April, with the candidates' answers released on April 26.

The questions and the answers received will be published on the trust's web site at Swindon Civic Trust is a voluntary organisation and registered charity.

There are 900 similar societies in the UK and it is affiliated with national organisation The Civic Trust.


SWINDON Civic Trust is asking all council election candidates the following questions:

  • What should Swindon Borough Council do to protect and make the most of the town's heritage?
  • Do you support the proposal by the University of Bath and developers to build housing, a business park and a campus on the green land surrounding the Coate Water Country Park?
  • What do you think the council should do to improve the town centre?
  • What can the council do to improve the quality of architectural design in the town centre?
  • Would you support the idea of holding design competitions for key new buildings?
  • What do you think of the council's performance on protecting the environment?
  • How can Swindon become a green town?
  • What do you think should be done about the unused factories and offices in Swindon?
  • How much more should Swindon grow?