Tuesday, 10 March 2009

County council campaign launched in Maryport

Elections agent Steve Harris, with Tina who is standing in Maryport East

THERE was a very good Allerdale BNP meeting held in Maryport last night where Tina and I were adopted to contest the Cumbria County Council seats of Maryport East and Maryport West.

As in 2007, when Tina and I stood in the Allerdale Borough Council elections, Steve Harris will be our election agent and will be running both our campaigns in the town.

Two years ago I stood in Ellenborough ward and Tina stood in Ewanrigg ward and each of us polled 30% of the vote, which was quite an incredible performance considering Labour hadn't been challenged in the borough council seats for 12 years. Our results shocked the political establishment in Cumbria and even though the local newspapers tried to play down the significance of our votes, they had to admit that there was a groundswell of support for the BNP in Maryport.

In my acceptance speech last night I said:

"We lived and worked in the town for 5 years from our home on Curzon Street. Two of our children were educated at the excellent Camp Road school and our youngest had two very happy years at the Stepping Stones nursery on Wood Street. We made, and still have, many friends in the town.
"We moved up from Worthing in Sussex to live in Maryport. We chose to come and live in this town, to bring up our family in this town, which shows just how much we valued Maryport and the way of life it had to offer."

Back in 2005, when the county council elections were last contested, the result in Maryport East was an easy victory for Labour candidate Keith Little, with 2044 votes over his sole Conservative opposition Derick Pattinson, with 421 votes. On that result it looks as though Tina has a mountain to climb, but the votes in 2007 put a completely different slant on things.

Maryport East is made up of both the Ellenborough and Ewanrigg wards so the results from 2007 show that Labour has 1200 votes against the BNP's 618 - a majority of under 600 votes.

Now just before Christmas the BNP contested another county council seat in Kells in Whitehaven and cut a Labour majority of 1010 votes to just 16! If we can do it in Kells, we can certainly do something similar in Maryport, so there's everything to play for in this ward.

In Maryport West, where I am standing, last time around Labour's Bill Cameron polled 1706 votes against Conservative Neville Lishman, who polled 615 votes.

This ward includes the Allerdale wards of Flimby and Netherhall where Labour was unchallenged in 2007. Well, they are going to be challenged this time around and leafleting is already taking place in Flimby and in Netherhall.

Two years ago there was a real buzz about our campaign in Maryport. Local people rallied around and we had teams of leafleters out working for most of the four weeks of the campaign. We put out four different leaflets and it was only the Labour Party's well organised system for getting out its postal vote support that secured the victory. This time around we have started our campaign much earlier and hopefully we will be able to close the gap on Labour even further on June 4th.

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