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Archive for Elections

Consultation Number 1 : On Polling Stations

polling station sign

There are quite a few consultations going on at the moment. Here’s one on polling stations:

What’s it about? Polling Stations- where people vote in elections.

What isn’t it about? – it’s not about the boundaries of council wards , or which areas are represented by which councillors. That’s a different consultation…

What’s the deadline for replying? 12th September

Give me a bit more info: Well, there are 45 polling stations across the district,, from Rawreth Village Hall in the west to the Heritage Centre on Foulness Island in the east. This is a routine consultation to check that the polling stations we have a convenient for people to get to and convenient to use.

Are there any big changes planned Should I be alarmed? There’s not much cause for alarm. The only polling station suggested for closure is at Paglesham Congregational Church, which isn’t available anyway for 2015. Probably the key question is whether the polling station at Hullbridge Free Church should be replaced by one at Hullbridge Sports and Social Club:

The Free Church is well known as the polling station for the area, however the disabled access needs improving.
Disabled access is better at Hullbridge Sports and Social Club. Parking facilities are good, but those on foot have further to walk as the club is situated down a long access road.

Where can I find out more? Look at the District Council website here. And in particular download the Returning Officers comments and proposals here.

Election Result : UKIP gain 3, Labour gain 1, Lib Dems Lose 1, Tories lose 3

Rayleigh at dawn this morning

Rayleigh at dawn this morning

The final results came just after 4 this morning and we left the count as the dawn broke over Rayleigh.

Here’s the outcome :

UKIP gained their first 3 seats – Great Wakering & Foulness, and Trinity ward from the Conservatives, and Grange Ward from the Lib Dems. But after two early gains their challenge fizzled out a bit. They failed to take Hawkwell North (where they only lost by 25 votes last year) and Whitehouse (where they only lost by 7 last year). UKIP now have 3 seats , and are equal in size to the Lib Dem group.

Labour gained a seat, after being completely absent from the council for some years. The Labour candidate Jerry Gibson, beat James Cottis.

The Lib Dems lost Grange to UKIP, which is really disappointing for us after having a good candidate in Chris Stanley to follow Chris Lumley. However at least Chris Black was a comfortable winner in Downhall and Rawreth.

Michael Hoy comfortably held Hullbridge for the Greens and John Mason did the same for the Rochford Residents Party in Hawkwell West.

The Conservatives lost 3 seats but had comfortable wins in Hawkwell South (Heather Glynn) and Hockley Central (Carol Weston). . They had narrower wins in Hawkwell North, Rayleigh Central, Wheatley and Whitehouse.

And now… off to bed after being up for 23 hours!

A Year After Rayleigh South

Last year Keith Gibbs (UKIP) beat John Flack (Conservative) in the County Council election for Rayleigh South.

They are both standing for election tomorrow.

Even though Keith Gibbs is already a County Councillor for Rayleigh South, and so has to deal with Rayleigh’s highways, education , social services issues etc, he is standing for the District Council in Hawkwell North. Which is pretty odd, and it’s hard to see how it can help his present constituents in Rayleigh.

Meanwhile John Flack is on the Conservative list for the European elections..

Steve Tellis For Central Ward

steve tellis

Steve Tellis is our Liberal Democrat candidate for Rayleigh Central ward. He describes himself as follows:

Lived in Rayleigh for over 25 years .
Married, children educated in Rayleigh schools.
Experienced former councillor, works in London (train commuter).
Strongly against the Council’s introduction car park charges on Saturday afternoon, which will harm the town centre.
Campaigned against extra housing development during the consultation period.

Steve was the guy who got the names for the car parking petition together with Chris Stanley (he took the photo of Chris that has been in the press).

 

Steve mentions he is a former councillor – indeed he was elected as a Lib Dem for Wheatley ward some year ago. The way he got elected was pretty extraordinary. Wheatley Ward has generally been the Conservative’s strongest ward in Rayleigh and winning it is a pretty awesome task. Steve stood there in the early 1990s and lost – by just one vote. As it happened, the other seat in the ward came up the following year and Steve had another go. As you can imagine, the closeness of the result made it easier for both the Tories and the Lib Dems to get people out to vote – because one person’s vote really could make a difference. The end result was that Steve won the second time around by over a hundred.  The extraordinary thing was the turnout – over 60% in an ordinary council election.

 

Poll Cards

Just to say .. if you are in a ward with a District Council and European election on May 22nd, you will probably have received one polling card that covers both elections…..

It’s not essential to take your polling card with you to the polling station, but it does help.

When We’re Good We’re Very Very Good And When We’re Bad We’re Horrid..

lib-dem-libby small

Southend Labour blogger and councillor Julian Ware-Lane has a summary here of council by-elections across Britain last month.

He mentions that in a by-election in Lincolnshire the Lib Dems only got 9 votes. That is an amazingly poor vote – bearing in mind you need 10 names on your nomination paper.

But on the positive side, the Lib Dems were the only party to actually gain any seats – winning one from the Conservatives and one from an Independent.

It shows that where we are working hard and have a real connection with local residents, we can do very well, despite the national opinion polls.

What We’ve Learned From Our Canvassing So Far

Rainbow over West Rayleigh this evening

Rainbow over West Rayleigh this evening

Canvassing is a pretty enjoyable experience this year.

In our key wards of Downhall & Rawreth and Grange our support seems about as strong as in previous years. People are generally friendly, and even those who are not voting for us are polite. We’ve even gained a couple of extra leaflet deliverers!

Frequently in Grange Ward residents tell us that they think Chris Lumley has done a really good job as a ward councillor.

Main issues? Well, national politics isn’t being mentioned much. (Though a few people are still pretty unhappy with the Lib Dem national party over Tuition Fees.) The main local issue is the proposed housing – residents are mostly concerned about traffic, flood prevention and schooling, which is what we expected. People are asking where the proposed Traveller site will be – it’s further away than most people had thought, though they are generally still concerned about it.

There are also a lot of very local items cropping up , such as parking in Grange Gardens, and on the junction of Fairland Close and Hambro Hill.

But away from the issues, it’s great walking around talking to people and chatting about things like their gardens. And – not for the first time this year- we’ve had someone praising the work of the Basildon Cardiothoracic Centre.

The Final Five Wards ….

Rayleigh Central
The current Conservative Councillor, Pat Aves, is stepping down.
David Bodimeade (Labour)
Margaret Spencer (Conservative)
Stephen Tellis (Lib Dem)
Sally-Ann Twydell (UKIP)

Rochford
The current Tory councillor here is James Cottis , although he is giving a Paglesham address. The UKIP candidate is giving a Shoeburyness address.
James Cottis (Conservative)
Jerry Gibson (Labour)
Jacqueline Moyies (UKIP)
Arthur Williams (Independent)

Trinity
The current Conservative Councillor, Jim Grey, is stepping down. The Labour candidate is giving an Ashingdon address.
John Hayter (UKIP)
Bob Milne (Conservative)
Victoria Williams (Labour)

Wheatley
The current Conservative Councillor, the well-known Mavis Webster, is stepping down. The Labour candidate is giving a Hullbridge address.
Rachael Broomfield (Labour)
Jack Lawmon (Conservative)
Robert Murgatroyd (UKIP)

Whitehouse
The current councillor is Conservative Robin Dray, although he only beat Linda Kendall of UKIP by a handful of votes last year. UKIP have a diffent candidate this time.
Robin Dray (Conservative)
Jason Hodson (UKIP)

The Next Four Wards……

Hawkwell South
Currently a Conservative seat . Veteran councillor Heather Glynn is standing again for the Conservatives:
Heather Glynn (Conservative)
David Lench (Labour)

Hawkwell West
Currently held by the Rochford District Residents party. John Mason is defending his seat.
Gill Gibson (Labour)
John Mason (Rochford District Residents)
Michael Webb (Conservative)

Hockley Central
Currently a Conservative seat. The current councillor Carole Weston is standing again.
Steve Hickin (Labour)
Carole Weston (Conservative)
Gabrielle Yeadell (Green Party)

Hullbridge
The seat that comes up this year is currently held by Michael Hoy from the Green Party. He is standing again.
Mark Hale (Conservative)
Michael Hoy (Green Party)
June Mather (Labour)

The First Four Wards….

There are 13 seats up for election this year.
The Conservatives are defending lots of seats and have candidates everywhere.
Labour and UKIP currently don’t have any district Councillors but have lots of candidates.
The Liberal Democrats , Greens and the Rochford Residents each have councillors but don’t have many candidates.
There are a few independents….

This is how it looks for the first four wards, in the order they are shown on the council website

DOWNHALL AND RAWRETH
Currently a Lib Dem seat.
There are just two candidates:
Chris Black (Lib Dem, the sitting councillor)
Keith Podd (Conservative)

FOULNESS AND GREAT WAKERING
Currently a Conservative seat. The sitting councillors is Trevor Goodwin, but he is standing as an independent this time!
Vicki Brandon (No description)
Trevor Goodwin (Independent)
Neil Hookway (UKIP) Mr Hookway’s address is given as in Hadleigh!
Tony Porter (Conservative)
Myra Weir (Labour) Myra is a former councillor, but lives in Hawkwell.

GRANGE
Currently a Lib Dem seat, the sitting councillor Chris Lumley is stepping down.
Jamie Burton (UKIP)
John Jeffries (Labour) Mr Jeffries address is given as in Rochford.
Carol Pavelin (Conservative)
Chris Stanley (Lib Dem)

HAWKWELL NORTH
Currently a Conservative seat, the sitting councillor is Jo McPherson
Keith Gibbs (UKIP) It’s a surprise to see Keith standing here, not only does he live in Rayleigh, he is the County Councillor for Rayleigh South, you might think he has enough to do dealing with Rayleigh South’s highways, education , social services etc….
Jo McPherson (Conservative). The sitting Councillor for this ward, though her address is given as Little Wakering.
Kevin Salt (Labour)

The List Of Candidates!

You can download the list of candidates for the District Council elections here.

We’ll take a closer look at each ward over the weekend… we’re off to the Annual Rayleigh meeting soon….

Chris And Chris

Why do Downhall & Rawreth and Grange wards have Liberal Democrat councillors? We think that’s because:

- people like how we have voted on various issues, such as the overdevelopment of our area.
– we try harder than the other parties to keep people informed with newsletters and onlineFOCUS
– the Lib Dems want to have listening councillors who engage with the public
– we vote for what’s best for our areas, not just following a party line like the current Conservative group.

There are District Council elections in May and we’d like to tell you what we are doing in these wards:

Chris Black (11 of 20) small

Chris Black is standing again in Downhall and Rawreth. Four years ago he beat the Conservative candidate pretty comfortably, but that was four years ago and we are taking nothing for granted.
Contact details for Chris Black are:
Telephone: 01268 778973
Email: cllrchrisblack@gmail.com
Letters: 56 Love Lane Rayleigh Essex SS6 7DX
Chris is a life-long Rayleigh resident, he went to Glebe, Downhall and Sweyne Schools. He works in the shipping industry along the Thames.

chris stanley smallish

In Grange ward Liberal Democrat councillors Chris and June Lumley have a great record dealing with local problems in a friendly non political way that residents like, that is why they have been re-elected many times. June remains a Councillor but this year Chris Lumley has decided to retire from the District Council – although he will still be on the Town Council.

We have carefully chosen Chris Stanley as our candidate here, we think he is definitely the best person to follow in Chris Lumley’s footsteps. Chris has been part of our team for several years, helping to deliver our newsletters and getting involved in  local issues. He wants to be another listening councillor, keeping in contact with people. He has lived in the Down Hall Road area since 1970 and is a semi-retired electrician. “Chris and Chris” are already working together on issues – you might have seen them recently at events at the Mill Hall and St Nicholas School.

Contact details for Chris Stanley:
Phone 01268 785732
Email: chrismstanley@hotmail.co.uk
Home address: 48 Hambro Avenue Rayleigh, Essex

We put our hearts into working for our areas because we really do care. Too many people have been elected elsewhere in our District, just because their party is doing well in the national polls and they are wearing the right colour rosette. We don’t want that to happen here, but we could do with some help!  If any onlinefocus readers can help us a little, delivering 150- 200 leaflets or spending a hour helping us on election day May 22nd, we’d be very grateful!

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Daily Reporting by Chris Black

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If you want information on a particular planning application, you can find it on the District Council website here.

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“Rayleigh was the birthplace of Britain’s first surviving quintuplets, but that’s just one of its many claims to fame”

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