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Can Labour hold onto Crawley as Ifield becomes a political hotspot

Tension is mounting as the Conservatives look to take back Crawley

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Another year another local election but this time there seems to be more tension in the air than in a long time.

Labour have held control of Crawley council since 2014 with the slimmest of margins, but the size gap has not held them back from running with decisions heavily opposed by the Conservatives.

Their lead extended to its current position of 19/17 after the last local election BUT has the national interest in such explosive exposes such as anti-Semitism claims across the party already started to see a local impact?

Any party who has control is an instant target for all the negative stories about a town but with some very exciting developments over the past year, the new Queens Sq and improvements to K2 just a couple of examples, has Labour done enough whilst leading the council to continue its hold.

Take a look at the list of candidates who are up for election and there are limited choices, Labour, Conservatives, Liberal Democrats, Justice Party and Legacy (a newly formed party that appears to be made up of former UKIP members).

You can view the candidates here.

Five parties of which only two have any strength in the town.

And this is where it all starts to get very interesting.  Whilst Labour has more seats they are also more vulnerable.

With recent decisions about ward boundaries having more of a negative effect on Labour then areas such as Pound Hill North and Three Bridges are likely to remain safe and with strong support in Maidenbower and Furnace Green where can Labour look to grow?

The towns political map shows a very much east vs west approach with the west holding the majority of the Labour seats.  There are though three pockets of neutral control, Ifield, Gossops Green and Tilgate.  But, in this election, and due to the process of how elections are run, only Ifield is up for election this year.

Add into the mix that Southgate is also a split political area and whilst they do have two Labour councillors they are joined by a third Conservative one, then you start to see the main target areas.

Labour brought in a heavy weight in the form of an MEP last week and where did he do his press call?  Ifield.

So the battlefield has been set and if you are an Ifield resident then don’t be surprised if you get a knock on the door from both political goliaths more so than perhaps anywhere else in the town.

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Class A drugs found and dustman injured as police search for suspects following Crawley car chase

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A dustcart crew member sustained a minor injury after a car being chased by police collided with a bin lorry this afternoon (21st Jan).

The incident happened in Patrington Close, Crawley.

Police were responding to a car that was behaving suspiciously in Jewel Walk, Crawley earlier in the day.

When police tried to stop the vehicle it made off resulting in a police pursuit.

After a short chase the vehicle collided with a bin lorry in Patrington Close, Crawley.

The occupants made off on foot and police say enquiries are ongoing to locate them.

About 50 wraps of substances suspected to be Class A drugs were discarded during the foot chase.

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