AS PEOPLE across Wales went to the polls, Gwent residents have been giving their views on what the most important issues were this year.

The Welsh Government is responsible for hospitals, schools and transport in Wales, and the Argus has been out on the streets throughout Gwent asking which of these issues were most important to you.


When asked what issues were the most important in this election, Megan Davies, 31, from Pontypool, said: “It’s a bit of both – some national, some local.

“On a national scale, it was about things like the NHS and public transport. Locally, it was about mental health care.”

“It’s more so the green issues to me,” said 27-year-old Charles Wakefield, from Pontypool. “It’s redundant for us to be hammering the same chisel every time.”

Phoebe Harrison, 26, also from Pontypool, said that the handling of the pandemic wasn’t a major factor in her decision, but added: “England’s made a few stupid decisions with coming out of lockdown too soon.”

Alan Leonard, 60, from Garndiffaith, said he had voted using a postal vote.

He said key issues for him in this election were “looking out for youngsters with work” and “helping pensioners.”

Gabbys Diner in Abersychan has been used as a polling station.

Gabby's Diner in Abersychan has been used as a polling station.

However, Dave Cotton, 48, from Pontypool, said he probably wouldn’t be voting.

“I haven’t really been following it,” he said. “I think a lot of people don’t give a monkeys who’s in.

“I think a lot of people have lost faith in it. It comes from the top down.

“It would be the same to me with a general election. It doesn’t matter who gets in, it’s just the same.”

Paula Cotton, 55, added: “I think the government have destroyed small businesses. As much as they have offered financial support, you will have to pay that back sometime.

“Why have so many people had to lose their jobs? If you work in a factory, you can’t exactly work from home.

“What may not be essential work to them might be essential work for someone else.”

The Hogs Head near Abergavenny has been used as a polling station.

The Hogs Head near Abergavenny has been used as a polling station.

This year, due to Covid regulations, a number of polling stations have been moved to allow for social distancing and to avoid using schools where possible to limit further disruption to children's education.

This led to a number of sports clubs, such as Pontypool United RFC, large venues including The Hogs Head wedding venue near Abergavenny, and others such as Gabby's Diner in Abersychan being called upon to host voters.

Polling stations are open until 10pm today, but, unlike elections in normal times, the votes will not be counted overnight, with counting instead starting on Friday morning.