Jacob Williams
Sunday 13th October, 2019

Hundleton by-election

Hundleton by-election

If you think you’ve spotted some familiar names among the ten nominations submitted to contest next month’s Hundleton by-election, you’re not alone.

Only nine candidates will appear on ballot papers for the November 7th poll to fill the Pembrokeshire County Council vacancy caused by the death of the sitting member, Margot Bateman OBE.

One of those validly nominated – Francis Bunker for the Liberal Democrats – withdrew. The party is, however, still represented.

The ‘Bollocks to Brexit’ sash will instead be donned by Shirley Hammond-Williams.

No fewer than seven candidates will be vying for votes with either ‘independent’ or a blank description beside their name.

They include Jonathan Nutting and Daphne Bush.

Both former county councillors first elected to PCC in 2012, both who lost their seats in 2017 and both who stood in last autumn’s nearby Pembroke St. Mary North by-election.

A Steve Alderman, independent, has been proposed by the late incumbent’s husband, Brian Bateman, and seconded by John Allen-Mirehouse – who held the seat between 1995 until he stood down in 2017.

The atmosphere in the Allen-Mirehousehold on election night is sure to be tense – as Johnny’s wife Rosie has nominated a certain Nicky Hancock (female.)

And the A-M family’s connection with Hancock goes further – her doomed candidature for the ward in 2017 was proposed by the seat’s outgoing councillor…Johnny!

Former county councillor David Edwards – who’s stood many times for Labour, lastly in Pembroke St. Mary North in 2017 – is standing as an independent.

One who’s gone in the opposite direction is Jacob Taylor – who stood in neighbouring St. Mary South as an independent at the 2017 election, but does so here and now under the Tories’ banner.

The other two indies are Tony Stenson, and Barry Grange – who came a distant last here in 2017.

A crowded field, where a candidate could win on a small vote share, is always difficult to predict.

With so many ‘independents’ standing it’ll be interesting to see if candidates address – in their literature, or on the doorsteps – their intentions to affiliate with a political group, if elected.

Special questions may be reserved for carpetbagging queen Daphne Bush – for whom, like Jonathan Nutting, this’ll be the third election, within three years, in three different PCC wards.

But uniquely among the candidates, Daphne’s baggage includes her well-documented support for Jamie Adams’ independent party which ruled County Hall with a rod of iron during the 2012-2017 term.

Such blind loyalty saw Daphne vote to abruptly discontinue the very credible gross misconduct proceedings against the authority’s disgraced chief executive Bryn Parry-Jones – who had trousered illegal pay rises and abused councillors who’d dared to question him with an expletive-laden rant.

Not only did Daphne’s support get Parry-Jones cleanly off the hook, but she also voted to reward him with an eye-wateringly large golden handshake – to get him off the scene.

Private Eye’s Rotten Boroughs column famously described how the £300k+ ‘severance package’ was hastily pushed through the council chamber with the support of councillors like Daphne, so that BP-J could “…eff off into the night without having to account for his greed.”

The by-election to Pembrokeshire County Council’s Hundleton electoral division will be held on Thursday, 7th November.

In alphabetical order of surname, all candidates are listed below with the description appearing alongside their name on the ballot paper, if specified, in brackets:

Steve Alderman (Independent)
Daphne Margaret Jane Bush
David William Edwards (Independent/Annibynnol)
Barry Edward Grange (Independent)
Shirley Margaret Hammond-Williams (Welsh Liberal Democrats – Democratiaid Rhyddfrydol Cymru)
Nicky Hancock (Independent)
Jonathan Anthony Robert Nutting
Tony Stenson (Independent)
Jacob David Taylor (Welsh Conservative Party Candidate – Ymgeisydd Plaid Geidwadol Cymru)

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  • Flashbang

    This field just looks like a grab for cash with no thought of actually representing the voters of the area. More disgusting Pembrokeshire politics by failed troughers.

  • Malcolm Calver

    I note there are no candidates from Welsh Labour and Plaid Cymru parties.

    Both these parties boast about their policies and ambitions for Wales and its people at national level, so one wonders why would they not put “party candidates” up at local level.

    I suppose with the present extreme policies of both Labour and Plaid Cymru it could be seen as detrimental to any candidate to be endorsed by them.

    The electors of this ward need to be assured that the successful candidate will not do a “Pearl Llewellyn” and jump ship.

    Whilst the Liberal Democrats have a clear “remain” in the EU no matter what policy, other candidates’ views should be sought on this issue.

  • Mark

    Terence Bradney came second for the Conservatives in Hundleton two years ago, so I wonder why he isn’t standing again.

    He may not have come a close second, but surely it was a performance the party would hope to build on in an obviously Tory sympathising ward.

  • Mischievous opposition members used to claim that Jamie Adams and John Allen-Mirehouse had been elected Leader and Deputy Leader of the IPPG because of the alphabetical rank of their surnames.

    The theory was that on the occasion of a recorded vote these two would be called out first alphabetically, giving members of the group the clearest possible indication of what was expected of them.

    The extraordinary meeting of council in September 2014 – called to consider a motion of no confidence in chief executive Bryn Parry-Jones – provided empirical evidence for the validity of this theory.

    Adams voted in favour of no confidence, Allen-Mirehouse voted against, leaving the next IPPG member on the list in a bit of a quandary.

    But Daphne was equal to the challenge – and went straight through the horns of this dilemma by abstaining.

    If, as some suspect, Steve Alderman is the IPG candidate in this election, the theory should mean that, if elected, he should be swiftly promoted to deputy group leader.

    In answer to Mark above, I notice that Mr Bradney is one of the proposers of the Tory candidate Jacob Taylor.

    While I wish Mr Taylor no ill will, I would ask the voters of Hundleton to consider whether one Jacob on the council might be more than enough.

  • Mark

    Mike, the local rumour is that Steve Alderman was approached to stand for Jamie’s independent party.

    If he is their candidate I do hope he is being up front about his intentions and motivations, rather than keeping it as a surprise for after he pops the champagne corks.

    If it’s true (that he is going into the election as their unofficial candidate) and he’s successful, it won’t be good enough for him to deny it all afterwards by claiming “…I had no intention of joining, I was only approached afterwards…” so it would be worth seeking his position for the record well ahead of the election.

  • Caz Schmitt

    Been looking high and low for platforms on Shirley Margaret Hammond-Williams, but absolutely nothing.

    I have received flyers from all other candidates so why is Shirley so elusive? Not even on the Lib Dem website.

    Something to hide or another in it for another reason? Where can I see what she stands for?

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