We invited each candidate to supply up to 500 words on why they deserve your vote, optionally including a photograph and a link to an election address. We have published their submissions verbatim, no editorial changes have been made. Any errors are those of the candidate.
I was privileged to be a member of Rye Town Council 2003-13 and have served three terms, 2007-19, as one of Rye’s two representatives at Rother District Council. Twice my partner was a member of a different political Party – which caused no problems since all agreed that rival political colours should go back in the dressing-up box when election time concluded: and the mission was to do our best for the entirety of our residents. Recently, Labour has enjoyed a large majority in Hastings Borough whilst it has been the Conservatives who have formed the administration at Rother. I have been lucky to be a member of the cabinet for nine years, latterly as lead member for finance, and chairman in 2011.
Successive governments have massively reduced grants and subsidies to local government – which has has to contract and drop a number of desirable services. Although it is possible to be disheartened, or worse, by the conduct of Parliamentarians (there are arguments for brexit and arguments for no brexit: but none for a botched half-brexit), there is a real opportunity for Councils who serve the citizens of Rye to work more closely together as colleagues – with County and District Councils (who provide the resources and raise most of the taxes) in regular consultation with Town Councillors who should know all the angles. Evidence suggests that this may be possible – reference the recent refurbishment of the Landgate (paid for mostly by Rother but with generous local contributions); and on-going consultations as plans for civil parking enforcement are worked up and solutions found for long-term off-street spaces.
Members of the next four-year Council will be faced with a host of other challenges. It would be an honour to be on board.
Image Credits: David Ampthill .