Stroud District Community Independents
Stroud District Community Independents
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Home | Stroud District Community Independents
Local elections on
Thursday, 2nd May
Thea Pilikian, Helen Elliott-Boult, Robin Layfield and Charlie Mitchell
Our values
We stand for grassroots democracy and community organising

We know that people and the communities they live in are best-placed to solve the problems they face.

The role of councillors is to enable and empower everyone to take action and get things done.

We practise inclusive and compassionate politics

Our communities are at their best when they are empowered to use their voice, and to share perspectives and experiences on any given issue.

As your representatives, it is our mission to create safe and accessible spaces in which everyone feels free to speak.

Local democracy has to be transparent, open and accountable

We are open and clear about how we make decisions, encouraging collaborative decision making and co-creating how we share our news.

We are directly accountable to the community we serve. We believe in participatory democracy where everyone has a voice.

Who are we? Why are we different?
Charlie MITCHELL, Helen ELLIOTT-BOULT and Robin LAYFIELD in the Prince Albert, Rodborough

We are an independent network of local councillors: activists and community leaders from across Stroud district, who are here to put people before politics.

We believe that local government has the potential to make a big difference to everyday life for everybody.

We are standing as councillors because we want to bridge the gaps between our communities and political power.

We share a long track record of working for the people in our wards

We want to turn this experience into political action and use our understanding of everyday life in our area to shape the decisions that are made for all of us.

We are not aligned to any political party

This means we are free to speak up for the people we represent, make decisions that consider everyone’s interests and prioritise work that helps our communities.

We are here because we care

Between us, we have built up a comprehensive understanding and lived experience that we can bring to the discussion.

We create opportunities to learn from everyone we work with.


There are three Ward Councillors for Cainscross. If you live there, we are asking you to trust ONE of your THREE votes to our independent candidate — Charlie MITCHELL.

“I’m standing up for what really matters: giving local people a say in the decisions that affect us all”

Charlie MITCHELL [she/her] works tirelessly on inclusivity and has pioneered a number of initiatives that bring people together, finding practical solutions to help meet their needs.

Charlie is keen to make all of our public spaces more accessible and has also launched a programme of support for parents of children who see the world differently.

“Being a parent of children with different needs gives me a real understanding of what matters most for our families”

Rodborough has two Ward Councillors. Robin LAYFIELD is currently one of them and plays a key role on the Co-operative Alliance Leadership Team.

We are asking you to pledge BOTH YOUR VOTES to keep Robin on the council and help us to bring Helen ELLIOTT-BOULT onto the district council for Rodborough too.

“I believe that community leaders, not political parties, are best placed to represent us”

Helen ELLIOTT-BOULT [she/her] cares deeply about the environment, women’s rights and social justice.

Helen has been a Parish Councillor since 2021. She helped to lead Rodborough right through the pandemic, co-ordinating volunteer networks and establishing many of our street-based Whatsapp groups.

In 2022, Helen called for a public conference to challenge the police and local government to do more to prevent violence against women and girls.
“I believe in a politics based on representation, on empathy, kindness & compassion”

Robin LAYFIELD [he/they] has been a Stroud District Councillor representing Rodborough since 2021.

Robin is passionately committed to inclusion, a fair chance for everyone and a grassroots politics based on actions and not just words.

Robin always puts the needs of our close-knit community first.

In 2023, Robin helped set up an internet drop in centre at the Rugby Club after a major outage cut off 300 households for a week
Stroud Slade

Stroud Slade will be electing one Ward Councillor and we are asking you to vote for Thea PILIKIAN.

“Hi, I’m Thea, you’ve seen me around. I’m often at the Middle of the Hill Community hub.”

Thea PILIKIAN [she/her] is a teacher and works at Kid’s Stuff at Brimscombe Mill.

Thea believes that community hubs like Middle of the Hill and Top of Town are vital for local resilience.

Thea is friendly and approachable, above all she really cares and she is standing to represent Slade Ward on May 2 to be your voice on the district council.

“I’m standing as an Independent because I can do more for the community that I love without having to follow a party line”

Thea is also standing for Stroud Town Council as an independent, alongside Dee NOLSON and Laurie DAVIES. There are three Town Council places and we are asking you to support all three of these independent, community-minded women for the town council.

Thea PILIKIAN and Dee NOLSON are both standing as Community Independents for Stroud Town Council
Thea PILIKIAN and Dee NOLSON are both standing as Community Independents for Stroud Town Council
District Councillors
Colin FRYER (Cam)
  • Housing Committee
Robin LAYFIELD (Rodborough)
  • Environment Committee (Vice-Chair)
  • Members Development Working Group (Chair)
  • Alliance Leadership Team
  • 🏳️‍🌈 Equality, Diversity & Inclusion Member Champion
  • Equality, Diversity, Inclusion & Equity Working Group
  • Regeneration & Investment Board
  • Stroud Regeneration Board
  • 2030 Community Engagement Board
  • Strategic Planning Advisory Board
Trevor HALL (Dursley)
  • Community, Services & Licensing Committee (Vice-Chair)
  • Leisure oversight board
  • Unite the Union rep
Doina CORNELL (Dursley)
  • Chair of Council
  • Audit & Standards Committee
  • ✊🏽 Migrants Member Champion
  • 🎖️ Armed Forces Champion
Council achievements
Thea Pilikian, Helen Elliott-Boult, Robin Layfield and Charlie Mitchell
Since July 2022, Community Independents have been part of the leadership of Stroud District Council - working collaboratively with the Green Party, Liberal Democrats and other independents to give strength and purpose to the Co-operative Alliance.

The Co-operative Alliance that leads the district council was established in 2012 and is one of the longest running cross-party administrations in the UK.

In that time, Community Independents have sat on key committees and have occupied senior roles at Ebley Mill: demonstrating that independent councillors can make a serious and meaningful contribution to the work of the district council.
Economy & Cost of Living
Community Independents have been active in helping residents to cope with the increased cost of living, by supporting and running Holiday Activities & Food (HAF) schemes, helping to fund warm spaces and asking for additional council investment into community hubs: an area that we see as absolutely key to building up local resilience in the face of repeated crises.

At the council-level, Community Independents have lived by their values to stand up for equitable employment practices for staff working at the Leisure Centre.
Thea PILIKIAN working at Kids Stuff in Brimscombe Mill
Thea PILIKIAN working at Kids Stuff in Brimscombe Mill
Community Independents have played an active role in protecting the wellbeing of our community and championing our values of compassion and inclusion.

Community Independents participate in Stroud’s Neurodiverse Universe, Rodborough Sunday Social and Stroud Imagines.
Charlie Mitchell leads a talk on Neurodiversity for Stroud Imagines at The Long Table
Charlie MITCHELL leads a talk on Neurodiversity for Stroud Imagines at The Long Table
Community Independents are focused on protecting our environment and empowering people to make environmentally-conscious decisions for the love of the living world.

This includes establishing Repair cafés to reduce wastage, attracting new investment into walking & cycling and accessible town centres, promoting the canal as a nature haven and supporting better flood mitigation, as well as championing e-bike hire schemes, along with improvements to public transport.
Helen Elliott-Boult with the proud owner of a fully functioning toaster
Local resident shows off his newly repaired toaster at the Rodborough Repair Café, with Helen ELLIOTT-BOULT
Social Justice
Community Independents have played a leading role in standing up for workers’ rights, community organising, awareness raising and in directly challenging the police to take real action on women’s safety in Stroud.
Robin Layfield stewarding at the GCHQ strike 40th Anniversary
Robin LAYFIELD stewarding at the GCHQ strike 40th Anniversary
Land Justice
We are proud that this council has social housing stock. We are committed to supporting the community hub network and the development of free and accessible third spaces* across the district.

We are passionate about the protection of outdoor space including the commons, parks and recreational spaces.

*Third spaces are places where people can gather to socialise or create or entertain, that are open to all and where there is no expectation of payment or cost.
Join us
We are building a network of independents across the district.

If you are an independent local councillor — or — a community leader that feels strongly aligned with our values and would like to bring your voice to the work we do, let's talk.
Campaign with us
We are not aligned with any political party.
We are committed and hard working community leaders.
We will make sure that your voice is heard.
We are doing it all on our own and we need all your help
From sharing our social media content, to putting a poster in your window, talking with your friends and family, donating towards campaign materials and pledging your vote.
Every little bit of help you can give us takes us one step along the way to giving our community a voice on the district council.
If you believe in what we are trying to achieve then take these four easy steps to support us now
4. Pledge your vote.
Send a message to our WhatsApp number 07404546064 with the name of your ward (CAINSCROSS, RODBOROUGH or SLADE) and we'll check back in with you on Election Day
Follow us
We have a presence on many different social media platforms as well as a mailing list that you can sign up to, so you can interact with us in the way that best suits you.

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