A campaign group is holding the council to account and ensuring councillors keep all of their pre-election promises.

Waltham Forest Citizens is made up of residents, faith groups and school representatives who work together.

Now, they would like to introduce themselves to the people living in Waltham Forest, and explain a little more about what they do.

Daniel Mackintosh is a senior organiser for Waltham Forest Citizens and a representative of the national campaign group the group is a part of; Citizens UK.

He said: “Waltham Forest Citizens is an alliance of nine faith and education organisations with 15,000 people in their membership. We aim to develop people to be effective in public life and train local organisations to become powerful by working together on the issues affecting their members.

“Through this work we build local democracy, holding politicians and businesses to account and help to re-weave the fabric of local communities by thickening the relationships between them.”

Teacher Gill Burbridge from Leyton Sixth Form College said her school has been involved in the Citizens UK programme over the last two years.

She said: “It has proved to be a hugely challenging, rewarding and motivating experience.

“Our students have been involved in a range of activities from hosting their own Refugee Welcome Summit to piloting a campaign against Youth Crime in the borough.

“Their passion, ideas and have been at the heart of all the college’s work through Citizens UK and they have become young leaders as a result of their participation.

“In the run up to the May 2018 local election, students were instrumental in preparing for the Waltham Forest Citizens Assembly and played a pivotal role on the night.

“During this event they spoke at length about their personal experiences of youth crime and the impact that it had had on them and their families and communities. Two of our young leaders acted as negotiators, ensuring that local politicians made clear and concrete commitments.”

Jamelia Mccalla Bedward is a Year 10 pupil at Connaught School for Girls in Leytonstone who is involved with Waltham Forest Citizens.

She said: “I think it is important young people get involved in Citizens UK because it gives them an awareness of what is happening with our society and also our local area and how they can give input on how to better their local community.

“The first thing that excited me about the assembly was that we as a school could actually be there and be able to hear what was going to be changed and how other people came to the assembly to make a difference.

“What also impressed was how much people were there and how they committed to come and see change take place.”

Father Andy Trenier, Rector of Chingford Parish, is also involved in the group.

He said: “Chingford is often thought of as a place apart from the rest of Waltham Forest but that is not really true.

“Waltham Forest Council is really important for Chingford because it helps us connect with people across our borough to fight for things that affect us just as much as others.

“Our work on affordable housing over the last year has really struck a chord with our congregations, for many of whom this is the biggest single stress in their lives.

“In the past the church in Chingford set up the Almshouse Charity, established the school, and much more besides.

“Getting involved in this way is just the latest expression of the church in Chingford making a positive contribution to the common good- something we’ve been doing for hundreds of years.”