Now the nominations for the 2017 local government elections are closed I am able to share with you that I am officially an Independent candidate for the Turriff and District ward.
I had put my nomination papers in early, on the first day after the notice of election, but decided to keep my head down and focus on stuff that I might not have time to do now that the nominations are closed and the notice of candidates is due out.
Why am I standing? Well:
I like to think I have done quite a lot in a relatively short time in Turriff, although I have been visiting and staying in Turriff for 13 years before I moved here permanently in 2012…
- Running the My Turriff community website & Facebook page in my spare time and at my own expense, to share local news, promote local businesses and groups is one thing I think brings some value to the community.
- I joined Turriff and District Community Council in 2015 and was voted in as Vice Chair for the year. I took on the role of Chair of Community Council for the 16/17 session of the council.
- I have also been involved in questioning the council about their dog fouling strategy and what they are going to do to improve the situation, this is ongoing.
- I facilitated & chaired one of the largest public meetings in Turriff in recent years, fighting to try and keep the nursing home open.
- Challenging the council decision to close the Haughs public toilets. I took this challenge on with the support of the Community Council and two members of the community, Joyce Thompson & Morag Lightning, both of whom are as passionate about keeping the facilities open as I am. This is an ongoing battle which we have partially won, we managed to get the toilets opened for the 2016 season and hopefully there is light on the horizon with the possibility that they will open again for part of the 2017 season.
- I supported the Friends of Turriff Cemetery group and helping them get up and running, this is a fantastic group of volunteers who work in partnership with Aberdeenshire Council to keep the cemetery clean and tidy and a welcoming place for visitors.
I have really enjoyed all of that and I have learnt a lot. I now feel that with my background of working with communities across the UK and my previous business experience, I could do more to help the other communities across the Turriff and District ward if I were an elected representative.
I might not be as well known as some of the other candidates and possibly not known at all in other towns in the ward such as Cuminestown, Rothienorman, Auchterless, Methlick, Fyvie and others, but I hope to be able to show that I can work across the ward to get the best outcomes for all of its communities.
Over the coming years there will likely be more cuts to budgets which in turn will bring cuts to services. Throw in a very real possibility that any European funding will disappear there is a lot to do to make sure that our communities get the best possible deal.
I am standing as an Independent candidate because I have always believed that dealing with local issues needs to have an independent voice that is not shackled by party politics, a voice that can speak up for the communities and not be under the party whip, a voice that is not afraid to be heard.
Please like my Facebook page so you can keep updated with my campaign, if you could like and share my Facebook page so other people can find out more about me that would be great, and please think about giving me your #1 vote on 4 May.