Long live the resolution!

LOSE weight, save money, new career – the New Year means making resolutions, but many of us fail to keep them, giving up after only a month and spending the next New Years Eve insisting I really will do it this time! Our reporter REBECCA FINDLEY caught

LOSE weight, save money, new career - the New Year means making resolutions, but many of us fail to keep them, giving up after only a month and spending the next New Years Eve insisting 'I really will do it this time!'

Our reporter REBECCA FINDLEY caught up with some of the people who make decisions that affect our lives in Comet country to see what hopes they have for 2007.

They've made their resolutions so let's hope that next year they won't be uttering the words 'I really will do it this time!'

SHARON TAYLOR, leader of Stevenage Borough Council, said: "The main resolution is to deliver against the local issues as identified below. In addition to ensure that Stevenage continues to be ambitious about its future and provide more opportunities for the people in the town to have their say. However, I would also like to see more Stevenage Boro matches and to learn ballroom dancing."

Last year's resolution by Cllr Taylor was,"to become the first Stevenage born leader of the borough council! Also, to ensure that we celebrate the 60th anniversary of Stevenage as a new town. Both were achieved, but there's a lot more to do."

Sharon also highlighted local issues for 2007. She said: "The redevelopment of our town centre, to provide more housing at Stevenage West and campaign for the Lister Hospital to retain its status as the major hospital for this part of the county.

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"To show that Stevenage takes its responsibility in the wider world seriously by achieving Fairtrade status for the town which we have been working towards."

STUART KENNY, director general of Letchworth Garden City Heritage Foundation, said: "I have resolved to try and find people I find irritating less irritating and to try and better understand the views of those who misunderstand me. Onwards and upwards for 2007!"

HITCHIN town centre manager Keith Hoskins said: "I haven't made any New Year's resolutions because I'm not very good at keeping them. I, like most people, tend to get sidetracked.

"My hopes for the year in general are that I would like to see something happen for Churchgate. It's been going now for eight years and something should happen to remove the air of indecision that everyone is trying to operate and trade in."

On a more personal note he said: "I'd also like to lose some weight, but I guess that's difficult to achieve. We're always a little over indulgent over Christmas and the New Year aren't we?"

He said Hitchin Festival was one of the biggest events to work on this year and added: "I'd like to see the town centre partnership grow strong and see it take on a bigger role in the community and see some sustainability. We are looking at ways of doing that."

Looking back, he said: "I didn't make any resolutions last year, but I certainly had hopes and aspirations. It's been a busy year and our AGM is in two weeks time and we'll have a review of what has been a very busy year."

CLOTHALL Common councillor Marilyn Kirkland's resolution for the New Year is: "To use the market and get my car serviced here as I usually do. I will ask myself if I can get the item that I want here in Baldock, rather than go to Letchworth. Also, not to buy any more handbags before I throw some away!"

Her previous resolutions included: "To be a little more laid back and less stressed. I think I need to practice this in 2007 also."

Marilyn said: "We must keep the use of the town hall for the people of Baldock. How we are going to achieve this is the biggest question. We need to support the market and the various shops and as they thrive it will encourage others to come to Baldock.

"The biggest issue for Baldock East will be the verdict on the village green application."

ARBURY councillor Andrew Young said: "To score more runs and get more wickets for my cricket team by working hard in pre season nets and getting fitter! It may even get me in the England team!

"Hope for more democracy in the emerging world, to find better ways in my democracy-based job to achieve this through negotiation and training of keen and brave campaigners in those tough countries.

"Also, to win in this year's elections by continuing to work hard for my ward and hoping the residents think I have done a decent job."

His previous New Year resolutions were, "To keep fit and well (have done ok) and to watch England win the Ashes (failed miserably!)"

Andrew's ultimate local issues for 2007 included: "More pressure on us locally to build houses everywhere, explaining why we need to recycle a lot more, but that it is expensive to do so and renewing our town centres, but trying to keep both retailers and shoppers happy!