On Thursday 2nd May there will be local elections for both Tonbridge and Malling Council and also Sevenoaks District Council.
On Tonbridge and Malling Borough Council there are currently 48 Conservatives, 4 Liberal Democrats, and 2 Independants. There are no Labour members.
Local Liberal democrats feel this unbalanced situation is bad for local democracy and it makes it harder for local views to be heard as shown in recent months about the Local Plan. In Tonbridge the lack of a local council compared with the rest of the borough, which has parish councils everywhere, makes it particularly hard for local voices to be heard.
As local Liberal Democrats we are concentrating on held and winnable seats but we are anxious as far as possible that every seat should be contested. We must avoid the situation of a few years ago where the Conservatives were elected unopposed in two Wards as no party found candidates to stand against them.
The Borough Council's main functions are to decide most planning applications; arrange refuse collections and deal with litter in public places; look after the two country parks at Leybourne Lakes and Haysden; manage the open spaces and sports fields in Tonbridge including The Castle and its surrounds; and carry out a range of public health matters. It also licences taxis and public houses. It has a many powers covering things it can do such as providing bus shelters, public toilets, and lobbying Kent County Council over highway matters.
In Lib Dem seats we have a long tradition of "keeping in touch all year round". But we do need help to expand our base and to give people the chance to vote Liberal Democrat across the Borough.
We need people willing to stand as candidates - and nominations have to be in at the end of March! Please get in touch with David Thornewell on 01732 847415 or on [email protected] if would be willing to consider this. He can explain what is involved depending on the seat you live in.
And we also need people to help through the local campaign, such as the delivery of leaflets or on polling day.
PLEASE DO GET IN TOUCH.