Wednesday, 02 December 2015

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Who will get your vote on May 1?

A CAMPAIGNER opposed to the redevelopment of Rickergate is aiming to win a seat on Carlisle City Council in the May 1 elections.

Simon Osman, whose Warwick Street home is under threat of demolition, is standing as an Independent in Castle ward.

Seventeen of the 52 council seats will be contested in what promises to be a keenly-fought election.

A net gain of just one for Labour would probably be enough for them to take control at the Civic Centre for the first time since 1999.

And should Mr Osman, 48, take Castle ward from the Liberal Democrats, he could hold the balance of power.

He has been a leading member of the Save Our Streets campaign but resigned from its executive to stand in the election as an Independent.

He said: “The next two years will determine the shape of Carlisle for the next 30 years. The people of this city should be fully involved when decisions are being made and that’s not happening.”

Labour currently has 25 councillors, the Conservatives 19, the Liberal Democrats seven and there is one Independent.

Although Labour is the largest party, the Conservatives hold power thanks to the support of Liberal Democrats.

The key battlegrounds are likely to be Belle Vue and Yewdale, which the Conservatives hope to win from Labour.

Labour has ambitions of taking a seat in Morton from the Liberal Democrats.

And Dalston, where Liberal Democrat leader Trevor Allison has a majority of just one vote over the Conservatives, could also change hands.

Council leader Mike Mitchelson said the Conservatives would campaign on their record, including the huge increase in recycling rates since fortnightly bin collections came in last year.

He added: “We are a good council delivering major change in Carlisle. Our policy has been to keep council tax increases at a fair level and we have achieved that.”

Labour is calling for a full review of Carlisle Renaissance, a programme to build 100 new homes for rent or shared ownership every year for the next decade.

And it has pledged to create a theatre/arts centre.

Labour leader Michael Boaden said: “We’re not going to have yet another feasibility study. We’re going to get on and do it.”

Mr Allison pledged the Liberal Democrats will campaign against post office closures.

The council’s only sitting Independent, Bill Graham, is defending his Hayton seat. Two more Independents are standing in Botcherby and Denton Holme, as well as Mr Osman in Castle, while English Democrat Stephen Gash is standing in Belah.

The British National Party, whose chairman Nick Griffin visited Carlisle on Sunday, is fighting nine wards.

Two members, Tony Carvell and Brian Allan, have just won places on Wetheral parish council where there were too few candidates to force a poll.

Three sitting councillors are standing down on May 1.

Labour’s John Reardon and Ray Warwick will not defend their seats in Upperby and Yewdale respectively while Conservative Judith Prest is quitting as a councillor for Brampton.

There are no elections in Allerdale, Copeland or Eden this year, or for Cumbria County Council.

Who is standing where

Sitting Carlisle city councillors are marked with an *.

Belah: Stephen Gash (English Democrat); David Morton (Con)*;  Elaine Thomson (Lab). Belle Vue: Mike Clarke (Con); Glen Gardner (BNP); Ian Stockdale (Lab)*; Louise Winspear (Lib Dem). Botcherby: Bobby  Betton (Ind); John Blenkharn (Con); Michael Boaden (Lab)*; Karl Chappell (BNP). Brampton: Alex Faulds (Lab); James Layden (Con). Castle: Charlotte Arnold (Con); Simon Osman (Ind); Christopher Southward (Lab); Jim Tootle (Lib Dem)*. Currock: Brian Allan (BNP); Lawrence Fisher (Con); Colin Glover (Lab)*; Olive Hall (Lib Dem). Dalston: Trevor Allison (Lib Dem)*; Gareth Ellis (Con); Grant Warwick (Lab). Denton Holme: Geoffrey Prest (Con); Joan Southward (Lab)*; Allan Stevenson (Ind); Janet Tootle (Lib Dem); Rob Walker (BNP). Great Corby & Geltsdale: Helen Horne (Lab); Doreen Parsons (Con)*. Harraby: Joyce Chisholm (BNP); Colin Farmer (Lib Dem); Michele Gwillim (Con);  Carole Rutherford (Lab)*. Hayton: Harry Cain (Con); William Graham (Ind)*. Morton: David  Barnes (BNP); Teresa Cartner (Con); Nan Farmer (Lib Dem)*; Ann Warwick (Lab). St Aidan’s: Tony  Carvell (BNP); Barbara Eden (Con); Paul Hendy (Lib Dem); Lucy Patrick (Lab)*. Stanwix Urban: Deborah Clode (Lib Dem); Paul Im Thurn (Lab); John Stevenson (Con)*. Upperby:  Donald Cape (Lab); Georgina Clarke (Con); Les Griffiths (BNP); James Osler (Lib Dem). Wetheral: Barry Earp (Con)*; Roger Horne (Lab). Yewdale: Steven Bowditch (Lab); Michael Elliott (BNP); Fiona Robson (Con).

Abbreviations: BNP - British National Party; Con – Conservative; Ind – Independent; Lab – Labour; Lib Dem – Liberal Democrat.



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