Local candidates announced for South Glos district elections

South Gloucestershire Council.

Candidates for the South Gloucestershire district elections, which take place on the same day as the general election (Thursday 7th May), have been officially announced.

Perhaps the most intriguing contest in the local wards will be in Bradley Stoke North (1 seat), where the incumbent, Ben Walker, elected in 2011 on a Conservative ticket, defends his seat after an acrimonious defection to UKIP in May 2012. Despite Cllr Walker’s relatively high public profile, gained through two terms as Bradley Stoke mayor and his current candidacy for the Filton and Bradley Stoke parliamentary seat, the Conservatives will be hoping that their candidate, Paul Hardwick (a Bradley Stoke town councillor since September 2012), can return the seat to the blue fold. The other candidates are Dawn Clode (Liberal Democrat) and Philip Edwards (Labour).

Eight candidates contest the Bradley Stoke Central and Stoke Lodge ward (2 seats), where incumbents Brian Hopkinson (Conservative) and Sarah Pomfret (Conservative) both stand for re-election. Independent candidate Rebecca Strong, who contested this ward in 2011, also stands again. Former district councillor Jon Williams (Liberal Democrat), defeated in 2011 by Ben Walker in Bradley Stoke North, is a surprise contender. The other four candidates are Anne Addison (Labour), Stephen Barr (UKIP), Sarah Drake (Liberal Democrat) and Natasha Thwaites (UKIP).

Residents in Bradley Stoke South (2 seats) will have at least one new councillor on 8th May, as one of the incumbents, Rob Jones (Conservative), is not standing for re-election, having moved to North Somerset during his term in office. John Ashe, the other Conservative incumbent, stands again, along with party colleague Roger Avenin (a Bradley Stoke town councillor since May 2007). They are opposed by six other candidates: Davis Addison (Labour), Anthony Blake (Labour), Tom Crawley (UKIP), Derrick Powell (UKIP), Andrew White (Liberal Democrat) and Christine Willmore (Liberal Democrat).

Some parts of the south of Bradley Stoke actually lie in the Stoke Gifford district ward (3 seats), where two of the incumbents, Brian Allinson (Conservative) and Keith Cranney (Conservative), stand for re-election. Here, the Green Party puts up its only candidate across the four local wards, Richard Burton. The other candidates are Ernie Brown (Conservative), Benjamin Campbell (Liberal Democrat), Andrew Chubb (Labour), Louis Crawley (UKIP), Ginge Dangerfield (UKIP), Dayley Lawrence (Labour), Ben Scott (Labour), Laurence Walker (Liberal Democrat) and Becky Williams (Liberal Democrat).

Bradley Stoke residents contesting out-of-town district wards include town councillor Ben Randles (Conservative) standing in Filton, town councillor Ed Rose (UKIP) standing in Patchway and Caroline Sullivan (UKIP) standing in Almondsbury.

The Journal understands that votes in the district elections will be counted on 8th May at Thornbury Leisure Centre, with the results being announced in the late afternoon/early evening.

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  1. I know that it is not a totally accurate survey, as the Bradley Stoke wards do overlap into other parishes, but going purely on the “address” of the candidates as being listed as “Bradley Stoke”, I make UKIP in the lead with 7 locals, then the Conservatives and Liberals tied on 3, and then none of the Labour candidates are listed as living in Bradley Stoke at all.
    Interesting !

  2. Interesting indeed Mark! Perhaps Us Labour candidates, (I’ve had my arm twisted to remain and stand again in the parish of Patchway, onerous and thankless task in the face of being voted down continuously by SGC district councillors on bigger issues) can’t afford to live in Bradley Stoke?! 😉 But sherioushly I’ve mentioned this elsewhere about candidates not actually living in houses they declare as home addresses, just rent these out, has gone on for years. Seperately I think some are chasing several seats around the district as they are chasing the 10grand plus a year they receive in expenses, I mean, does Bradley Stoke really need 5 district councillors at a cost of 50k plus a year, ditto the other districts too. Austerity, what austerity?? Nice household income when doubled by husband and wives serving, of which there are a few, along with their kids too! Meanwhile, they vote to cut local services, cut councillors I say! One thing I agree on with Ben Walker. This will be a big personal test for him, first time he’s stood for election as a UKIP candidate after changing horses last term, he did get hammered for it at the time with his dirty linen hung out to dry. Politics boring, never! Politics is life and life is politics, the FABS outcome of the main candidates is very interesting indeed, but meanwhile, I’ll get me anorak and get outta here!

  3. One wonders if the Electoral Registration and Returning Officer has read and understands the Representation of the Peoples Act regarding residential requirements. Or is he under pressure from the main clique of councilors to maintain the status quo.

  4. Apathy rules Rebecca, year after year, that’s why they keep getting away with it. Those in safe seats here must be rubbing their hands with glee with at least 50k each coming into their households after another five years, and as you know, some of them never even speak at SGC meetings, I’ve even seen some asleep! Over in Patchway Ken Dando is making a comeback after ditching the Liberals for the Conservatives, what price principles when it pays so well? Big big personal test for Ben Walker here, will he remain as a UKIP Councillor after all these years as a Conservative in Bradley Stoke, or will he end up with nothing? He was written off quite badly by Ian Onions in an excellent Bristol Post article on the FABS seat and area yesterday, 21st April, worth finding if the BS editor doesn’t share here (one in three voters here in BS and Filton has a degree too apparently) good luck in Stoke Lodge, I know what you are up against!

  5. We had UKIP at our door.

    They didn’t knock but left a Royal Mail-esque “sorry we missed you” style flyer despite someone being home.

  6. To Neil. Apoligies Neil. Not sure what happened there. If you would like for us to call again please let me know by email – benwalker@ukiplocal.org

    Just a quick note to Dave who’s opinions I always respect, I have been a UKIP District Councillor and UKIP member much longer than I was ever a Conservative.

    Note to All. Regardless of who you vote for, please just vote. 99p doesnt make £1 and together your votes will make a difference; and always keep it local! As Dave quite rightly points out, there are individuals who have little interest in the areas they stand, let alone live in them.

  7. @Cllr Ben Walker Thanks Ben, good luck, hope you get to stay involved as much as you want to, I sincerely wish you well.

    The biggest political commentary and feedback has been on the Little Stoke Muriel (my sic, Mural!) but I will watch with much interest on how it all pans out here and all across FABS, I like a bet and perming odds on candidates but I’m not sure I’d risk one here, as I say, interesting indeed.

  8. The apathy, unfortunately, comes from the voting system.

    You need PR if you really claim to be a democracy and we don’t have it.

    Take this area in 2010:

    28,500 votes counted for absolutely nothing because they weren’t for the winning candidate.

    19,700 votes DID count because they were for the winning candidate.

    How is that, in any language and by any definition, democracy?

  9. Hi CavM yes it does make you wonder. As the national scene changes and the two party system continues to decline in the eyes of fed up voters and the other parties grow maybe a change will be needed and made one day, as people would like to see the best of everyone thinking for the greater good rather than predetermined party outcomes.

    I’m told voting in a marginal (like this one?) does make a difference as it’s been termed too tight to call at the UWE analysis and Bristol Post articles, it seems Ian and Ben might well give Jack a run for his money here…

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