Penn is a suburban ward on the edge of the city. There are 12,508 residents (as of 2019), 33% of whom are considered ‘Black and minority ethnic’ (compared to the city average of 32%).
Penn is the second least-deprived ward in the city, with little economic or social deprivation and a low unemployment rate. An above-average number of children achieved a 9 to 5 grade in English and Maths GCSE. Despite this, only 48.1% of residents are satisfied or fairly satisfied with their neighbourhood, which is worse than the city average.
Most houses in Penn are owner-occupied, although there are some social housing and a few privately rented properties. Penn has several green spaces, parks and playgrounds, and includes parts of Penn Common.
A key campaigning issue in Penn is ‘Save the Seven Cornfields’, relating to the proposed housing development on green belt land near Penn Common. Local Tories have cynically attempted to take credit for this people-powered grassroots campaign, even as their candidates and councillors in other parts of the city campaign against developments on brownfield sites. The real test will come when the government’s proposed planning reforms, which abolish the green belt and will make it easier to build on sites like the Seven Cornfields, come before Parliament. Wolverhampton South West’s Tory MP Stuart Anderson says he wants to protect the green belt, but he’s never voted against the government.
Other issues in Penn include climate, the economy, and Brexit.
Penn is a marginal ward.
Penn Branch Labour Party holds branch meetings on the first Wednesday of each month at 5a, Mount Road, Penn, WV4 5SU. The Branch Secretary is Anne Mills, who can be contacted at email@example.com or on 07342 958693.
Penn Ward has a Facebook page called Penn Labour.