unveil Burnham and Highbridge County election candidates
and Highbridge Liberal Democrats have announced their candidates
for the forthcoming Somerset County Council elections on Thursday
Murphy, a former Mayor of Burnham-On-Sea & Highbridge, will
stand for the party in Burnham North.
John Parkes, a local Town Councillor, will stand in Highbridge and
candidates say they intend to "transform the way that Burnham
and Highbridge are treated by County Hall", making sure both
towns get their fair share of help from the authority.
say they will be available regularly to meet locals by holding drop-in
sessions, "rather than making decisions without talking to
the community first", which they say feel has happened in the
past few years.
will be featuring all the local candidates standing in May's election
- and we spoke to both the Lib Dem candidates this week.
Murphy is a long-standing businessman in Burnham and Highbridge,
who helped get security lighting for the Manor Gardens, and established
the Burnham to Apex cycle path. He is well known for organising
a multitude of local events, including Burnham's 'Picnic in the
Park' which celebrates its 20th year this July, along with many
free music events in both Burnham and Highbridge.
said: "The Conservatives at County Hall have really let us
down. They've made a hash of the finances, made far too many decisions
behind closed doors and don't take the time to listen to the very
people who elect them."
can doubt big changes are needed. I know Burnham well - this brilliant
town deserves to know that its businesses and residents are heard,
and get the best possible deal from County Hall. I'm determined
to put Burnham back on the map."
Parkes, a former teacher, youth services manager and seasoned campaigner,
promises to approach the challenge by devoting time, energy and
a real passion for Highbridge and Southern Burnham.
says that he is very keen to encourage local people to get involved
in making the decisions that benefit them, where they live.
said: "Local people know I'll stand up for them and I'll continue
to listen at my weekly surgeries. As a County Councillor, I will
continue to focus on being approachable and contactable, right at
the heart of our community, lobbying our Councils to ensure our
voices are heard - and then followed up with action."
campaigned successfully against Sedgemoor District Council's proposal
to transfer part of Apex Park to the neighbouring holiday park for
more caravans. If 'awkward' questions need to be asked at the County
Council, rest assured I will ask them!"
said that Highbridge's infrastructure desperately needs improvement
as vast new housing developments arrive and he will promote the
building of more surgeries, schools, better roads, bus and rail
services as well as rejuvenating Highbridge town centre and developing
more and better job opportunities.
local Liberal Democrat campaign is being spearheaded by Burnham's
former MP Tessa Munt, who is to stand for the Wells seat, currently
held by the Conservative County Council leader John Osman.
Munt, who has also stated her intention to run for Parliament again
in 2020, added: "I simply cannot stand by for the next three
years and watch as the Conservatives run the county into the ground.
Osman runs Somerset as if it is his personal fiefdom. A small group
of eight Councillors makes all the decisions in private, even though
the Conservatives have 31 elected members. It's no wonder so many
Conservatives are standing down - they've clearly had enough."
Theresa May's branch manager in Somerset, Cllr Osman has failed.
He oversaw the catastrophic collapse of Children's Care both as
the Councillor responsible and then as Leader - and he and his chums
are spending £1 million a month on employment agencies to
find social workers, when he was the one who fired them from their
added: "He threw away £741,000 in one year paying for
high profile Directors who couldn't fix the crisis in Children's
Care. For 3¾ years, Children's Care has been judged 'Inadequate',
the lowest rating, by independent Ofsted Inspectors. Things are
so bad that Whitehall has sent officers from Essex to run Somerset's
Conservatives claim to be the party of business - well, a good business
looks after its shareholders. In Somerset's case, that's you and
me and we've all ended up having to pay a high price for appalling
failures. Somerset deserves better, and that must mean all change
at County Hall."
Burnham-On-Sea.com will also be featuring local candidates for other
politicial parties as they are announced in the run-up to the election.