IN a corner of Pensnett called Poet’s Corner voters are keeping their minds on local matters.

Poet’s Corner is in the ward of Brockmoor and Pensnett which is currently represented on Dudley Council by Labour’s Karen Westwood and Judy Foster plus Conservative Cllr Rebbekah Collins.

In local elections on May 2, Labour may be hoping to get help from voters looking to give the Tory government in London a bloody nose but people in Poet’s Corner have their thoughts closer to home.

Tracy Northall’s problems start in her kitchen where the council has just fitted a new cupboard door upside down.

The 45-year-old community centre volunteer said: “It’s just about local with me, getting things sorted for the kids.

“When my boys were growing up they had the centre to go to to do youth clubs, now other kids are growing up we need the same for those.

“We need to get some money into the community centre to help out. There is big spending on council housing and things like that but if there is a little bit for us we could do with it.”

In a ward where local election turnouts tend to be around 22 percent, trust in politicians seems low.

Tracy added: “It’s what they say and then they don’t do it, they need to say what they are going to do.”

Labour voter Rebecca Spittle, aged 41, also volunteers at the community centre, she said: “There needs to be more things in the local area for kids, that is what our aim is at the community centre.

“Anything that can keep them off the streets, we had a man come and see us about the nature reserve, tidying it all up and putting benches in, that would be great for the kids just to sit there – in  the summer it would be amazing.”

Westminster politics seems a long way from the nearby Fens Pool Nature Reserve and the streets of Poet’s Corner with only high prices moving the debate out of Dudley.

Tracey Bowen, aged 42, said: “I don’t really get involved, the cost of living crisis at the minute is a joke – it affects everybody.”

Cllr Foster has represented the ward for 20 years and says lines between national and local politics can be blurred.

Cllr Foster said: “When we have gone on the doorsteps they say ‘you are all the same’ look at so-and-so nationally, we say to people ‘we can’t promise anything about the big issues. This is a local election and this is what councils do’.

“It gets people back to talking about local issues and conversations with us about what we can realistically do to help.

“This is largely a population who aren’t interested in politics – but they care about something that’s affected by politics that impacts on their lives directly.

“That’s where you can get people engaged.”

Meanwhile Tracy Northall, who is recovering from multiple transplant surgery, is hoping her cupboard door will be fixed soon.

She said: “It’s terrible, I now have to bend down, you try bending down with a transplant in your belly.”