Polling station sign. Pic: Neil Wykes
The results are in – well, for our quest to find out about the candidates bidding for a spot on Lichfield District Council, at least!
Polling station sign. Pic: Neil Wykes
A few weeks ago, we embarked on a bid to try to see if we could lift the lid on some of the names on the ballot papers who will make key decisions for local residents after May 5. It’s probably worth explaining a little bit about why we’ve done what we’ve done. The mission to begin with was not to try and drive more people to the ballot box or take some democratic stand about the need to vote. The Lichfield Blog has never been about political persuasion. Instead, what we wanted to do was try to put some meat on the bones of the people standing. Much of the idea came because, despite living in Lichfield for several years, I’ve never personally seen a political candidate on my doorstep. So when I go to vote, how am I supposed to make my decision? There’s also the fact that much of the information comes from who has the best media contacts and the loudest political voice. So by levelling the playing field and asking set questions, we hoped the result would be the opportunity for people to compare and contrast the responses of candidates in their ward and beyond. We tried to get email addresses for as many as possible. Some candidates got their questionnaires direct, others had them distributed by the local agent or regional party organiser (at the request of the political parties concerned). Others outside of the main parties had to settle for a good old-fashioned letter with a stamp on from us. Hopefully, you’ll see from the responses that we’ve been publishing that we’ve had a mix of replies from across the political spectrum. So has the plan worked? In terms of getting all candidates to respond, it’s a no. But in terms of allowing voters to make up their minds about the responses of candidates – or lack of them – then it’s a definite yes. I do hope that you will think seriously about those who did not respond. What does it say about their communication skills? You now have the chance to make a slightly more informed decision. Does your candidate care enough to give a response? Does your candidate speak for themselves or just trot out a standard party line? Do they have opinions that resonate with yours? Although our deadline has now passed for responses, we’re going to give those who did not reply a final chance to tell people why they should vote for them. We’ve already heard some whispers from people saying they didn’t get our questionnaire. Unfortunately, the parties wanted a central contact within their own organisations to handle our request, so any that haven’t reached the candidates can only be because of a breakdown in communication within their own organisations. However, it’s not rocket science – the questions are standard so people can email me their responses if their organisations haven’t passed our questionnaire on. So if you’re a candidate who hasn’t responded, now is the time to do so! We’ll be updating our master list (below) until May 4. That means you’ll be able to see – by looking at those who do not have a link to their published responses – the ones who didn’t feel that it was worth taking the time to tell voters what they were all about. Perhaps you may want to ask them why they didn’t reply next time they come knocking asking for your vote? All Saints
Alrewas and Fradley Armitage with Handsacre
  • Richard Cox (Conservatives)
  • Jill Hyden (Labour)
  • Steve Hyden (Labour)
  • Thomas Marshall (Conservatives)
  • Elaine Moore (Labour)
  • Martyn Tittley (Conservatives)
Boley Park Boney Hay Bourne Vale
  • Brian Yeates (Conservatives)
Burntwood Central Chadsmead Chase Terrace Chasetown Colton and Mavesyn Ridware
  • Shirley Barnett (Conservatives)
Curborough
  • Brian Bacon (Conservatives)
  • Norma Bacon (Conservatives)
  • Colin Ball (Labour)
  • John Brooks (Labour)
  • Eileen Cope (UKIP)
  • Mark Ellis (Lib Dem)
  • David Leytham (Conservatives)
  • Keiren Parkes (Lib Dem)
  • Lorraine Parkes (Lib Dem)
  • John Walker (Independent)
  • Tony Wilkins (Labour)
Fazeley
  • Ian Lewin (Conservatives)
  • Glen Mynott (Labour)
  • Alan Pearce (Conservatives)
  • Hayley Taroni (Conservatives)
Hammerwich Highfield King’s Bromley
  • Ian Pritchard (Conservatives)
Leomansley
  • Bob Awty (Conservatives)
  • Trevor Cook (UKIP)
  • Iain Eadie (Conservatives)
  • Ian Jackson (Lib Dem)
  • Derek Love (Lib Dem)
  • Andrew Smith (Conservatives)
  • John Smith (Lib Dem)
  • Mark Taylor (Labour)
Little Aston
  • Roy Boffy (Labour)
  • Louise Flowith (Conservatives)
  • John Morris (Labour)
  • Joseph Powell (Conservatives)
Longdon
  • Neil Roberts (Conservatives)
Mease and Tame
  • Sue Arnold (Conservatives)
  • Penny Bennion (Lib Dem)
  • Roger Bennion (Lib Dem)
  • Ellen Perkins (Conservatives)
Shenstone
  • Rita Hancocks (Conservatives)
  • Peter McTigue (Labour)
  • David Salter (Conservatives)
St John’s Stonnall Stowe
  • Jeyan Anketell (Lib Dem)
  • Bernard Derrick (Conservatives)
  • Colin Greatorex (Conservatives)
  • Karen Maunder (UKIP)
  • Max Rea (Lib Dem)
  • Christel Roe (Lib Dem)
  • Stephen Sanders (Labour)
  • David Smedley (Conservatives)
  • Rich Spencer (Green Party)
  • Malcolm Watson (Labour)
  • Caroline Wood (Labour)
Summerfield Whittington
  • Robert Strachan (Conservatives)
  • Alan White (Conservatives)
Which parties are best at responding?
  • Green Party: 2 of 2 – 100%
  • Independent: 3 of 4 – 75%
  • Liberal Democrats: 16 of 22 – 73%
  • UKIP: 7 of 10 – 70%
  • Labour: 17 of 37 – 46%
  • Conservatives: 14 of 56 – 25%

Ross

Founder of Lichfield Live and editor of the site.

30 replies on “Lichfield District Council election candidates round-up”

  1. A superb article and put into great perspective.I only know who our current councillor is as that said person lives just round the corner but i have never seen that said person out and about in the community walking or talking to the people that put that person in the council chamber in the first place ? This year im going to vote for an alternative who has at least responded to the Lichfield blog.

  2. This is an excellent idea making candidates available on your computer, as many times when they call at peoples’ houses there is no one at home (or they do not answer the door). PLEASE NOTE, AS IT SAYS AT THE END ABOVE THAT CONSERVATIVE CANDIDATES WERE SENT THE QUESTIONNAIRE MUCH LATER THAN THOSE OF OTHER PARTIES, ONLY A FEW DAYS AGO.

  3. Hi Penny, it wasn’t a great deal later – and as you’ll see, a number of Conservative candidates have responded already. We will wait and see how many replies we get by May 4.

  4. Ross, A great idea, at the end of the period you should publish a list of who responded and who did not. Too many Councillors take us the public for granted, they should be out canvassing and let us the voters hear what they have to say before we go to
    the “Polling Booth” Whittington/Streethay councillors had no opposition this year perhaps that why we have not seen or heard from them. NAME & SHAME Keep up the good work

  5. Seven days to go and ive not been canvassed or had a single leaflet come through ? I did see a conservative candidate who looked like he was canvassing two week ago round by Trent Valley Road but thats it.What happened to the days when elected councillors used to hold workshops for their constituents ?

  6. I am a conservative candidate, I have posted on this blog, I and other Conservative candidates in Chadsmead have been canvasing, knocking doors and will befor polling day knock every door in Chadsmead ward. Not all are at home but we try.

  7. I’ve been out knocking doors now for 2 weeks never have we in chadsmead worked so hard for your vote , we have had many people  talk to us ( some for some against ) but we have been seen and herd , so I ask you to think about local issues and what we can do for you . 

  8. Has any one noticed that all labour candidates in all saints , burntwood central, chaseterrace, boney hay , chasetown , highfield , and summerfield ( total 15 labour candidates) all use the same script , come on guys be original and write your own , how can we trust you .

  9. Of course, it has been a good exercise and if Ross does it again next time we will be prepared. For instance I can explain how I made the first council I joined stop meeting illegally in a farmer’s kitchen instead of a public building or how I helped to persuade Aldi to use the latest environmental refrigeration process in their headquarters when Chair of Environmental Health in North Warwickshire. Stuff like that. Mind you, the Lichfield Blog experiment compares well with our print news as this is the first election I’ve known where they have not asked the Parties for a brief manifesto.
    But let me respond to the romantic notion about Independent candidates. Anyone who has any knowledge of local councillors will know they are all individuals, whatever Party they are a member of, but at least voters know where they stand with those representing a Party.
    Let’s take a couple of local LDC “independent” examples. Lichfield’s infamous John Walker was with UKIP, stood as Independent but formed a group with the LibDems, left the Lib Dem/Independent Group and somewhere in between signed the BNP County Council Candidate’s nomination paper! Burntwood’s Paul Atkins became Deputy Leader of the LibDem/Independent Group and gave apologies for more meetings than he actually attended these last 12 months – even losing his seat on the Town Council for not attending a single meeting for 6 months.
    And what about the percentage responses – c’mon: 100 per cent for the Green candidates – all 2 of them! No matter that the one in Burntwood does not appear to have delivered a single leaflet to any elector in the ward where he is standing! Probably because he would have to admit that they want to bring back the fuel duty escalator, meaning an increase of 8 per cent on fuel each year, or introduce planning legislation that would make it more difficult to reject wind farms.
    The Independents can, and are, vague in their promises to the electorate but I suppose we can be sure they at least represent themselves.

  10. Firstly well done to the Lichfield Blog for giving us an opportunity to find out more about those hoping to represent us. It’s disappointing that not everyone has replied. In Leomansley, only the LibDems have replied & they are also the only party I have heard or seen anything of (doorstep, leaflets).  How can the others expect me to vote for someone I know nothing about?

  11. Hi Ross, Firstly thank you for giving us all the opportunity to use this forum to explain our policies and views. We all have been very active in delivering our messages around the District and also being able to chat to people. I have great trust in our electorate who will make the right choice on Polling Day supporting those candidates who have made a difference to peoples lives in the Wards they represent.

  12. I’ve learnt nothing from any of the candidates submissions. Every single one of them could be pretty well compressed to

    “I’m in favour of good things and I’m not in favour of bad things” without losing much in the detail at all.

  13. Actually, the Green party candidate for Stowe has views on Trident but although I know Lichfield District council have a nuclear bunker I don’t think if he’s elected he’ll be able to influence that. I could be wrong though. Stowe pool submarine base as part of the defence cuts maybe?

  14. Ross, and all the 575 people who viewed my post on this blog to date thank you. Having not used a blog before I am amazed at the response my post has received. I am so glad I responded to the questionnaire. If hits turn into votes WOW! Ross thank you for the opportunity to reach a wider audience. Finally I feel I can trust the
    electors in Chadsmead to make an informed desion at the ballot
    box

  15. Thank you to everyone in Chadsmead for the tremendous support on the doorstep, for your messages and your appreciation of our website http://www.chadsmeadconservatives.co.uk We know you like being kept informed and we do our best to speak to as many as possible. Please now go out and vote for your Chadsmead Conservative candidates, Terry Thomas, Mike Fryers Snr & Mike Fryers Jnr. Thank you..

  16. Hi Mike Fryers Snr,

    Thanks for your comments – it’s a shame more of your fellow candidates did not see the benefits.

  17. We now have the results.Both seats on the district council, all three seats on the city council wow! THANK YOU. As I said with an earlier comment I new I could trust the electors of Chadsmead to make the right choice. you have now given us the mandate to carry on with the policys we put forward in our election manifesto. On the doorstep we have listened, regarding speeding traffic,Lichfield shopping and policing. We will endever to act on your behalf to achieve the desired results. Ross I am getting to enjoy using the blog,thank you.

  18. Good to speak to you tonight Mike.As you say an excellent blog who did a great job today with the live election updates and also promote our City from every opportunity thanks again all makes me proud to love and live in Lichfield.

  19. Thank you to the voters in Chadsmead for your support in electing myself and my Conservative colleagues to the District and City Councils.  We shall continue to keep you informed through our website http://www.chadsmeadconservatives.co.uk   Thanks again  to The Lichfield Blog for having given candidates this further avenue for communicating their policies to the electorate. It was good to see Phil and Ross at the count at Drayton Manor keeping people informed live online – keep up the good work.                                                                                                                               

  20. I would like to thank sincerely all the folk of Alrewas and Fradley who came out on May 5th and voted for me. I will continue to represent the Villages to the best of my ability working alongside the Parish Councils. If elected as Leader of my group next week, I can assure you that I will continue to work professionally in dealing with the Financial situation the Authority finds itself in, and along with colleagues take forward those pledges made at the election. Regards Mike.

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