Letter: Online presence offered for Independent candidates

Island resident sets up Website for Independent candidates standing in the May local elections.

We always welcome a Letter to the Editor to share with readers. If you have something you’d like to share, get in touch. This one from East Cowes resident Dave Quigley. Ed

Anyone interested in the forthcoming Council elections on 2nd May might like to look at the following Websites

http://www.independent-island.co.uk/ and http://www.independent-island.org.uk/

island-independent-fluerThese Websites have been set up by myself but will, apart from the odd flyer, consist entirely of material supplied by the candidates themselves.

I would appeal to all readers of OnTheWight who wish to see the current incumbents at County Hall removed and a new and politically independent administration installed, to get out and spread the word, there is a huge silent majority on the Island who never vote, it is these voters we need to convince that National Politics have no place in Local Government.

ALL local councillors should be elected to represent the people of their ward and not be ‘yes men’ to a dictator whose strings are pulled from Westminster.

To any prospective Independent candidate I offer space on the .org.uk site which is specifically for election material.

I can be contacted at djqhda@yahoo.co.uk and would welcome any serious contributions.

Friday, 22nd February, 2013 1:57pm


ShortURL: http://wig.ht/2ax6

Filed under: Election, Island-wide, Letter to the Editor

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Any views or opinions presented in the comments below are solely those of the author and do not represent those of OnTheWight.


  1. I do not believe it

    23.Feb.2013 8:58am

    I say “Good Luck” to all independents standing in the May elections! After years of stark incompetence this island deserves better local governance.

    However, I am concerned that all the effort put in to change the current regime’s personalities will be dissipated by the sheer numbers involved combined with the fact that so few people bother to vote.

    I therefore propose that a major combined effort be formulated to oust the senior architects of this feckless administration, i.e. the likes of Pugh and Giles, by flooding their wards with leaflets and canvassers in an effort to get people out on voting day and vote for an independent

    Put me down as a voluntee! Anyone else?

    • the only problem I have with independents is that wonce elected they may then show their true colours and join the con party.

      • Exactly Baz,shifting party allegiance after they have been elected further undermines the electorates trust in a system which already fails to represent them and should not be permitted. If an elected Councillor wishes to sell out and defect to the rotten-to-the-core Tories, or any other party, they should have no alternative other than to resign and stand in the subsequent bye election as a rotten-to-the-core Tories, or any other party, candidate.

        • wightywight

          23.Feb.2013 12:20pm


          There’s no defence of Cllr Whittle and his actions. None whatsoever.
          That is not the case with the current Independents nor, as far as I can tell, with any prospective candidates.
          Furthermore, there is no reason to extrapolate his actions into an Independent wide activity….
          We have two credible choices – like it or not.
          On the basis that this failed and abject administration has to go, we have to vote them out.
          The Labour Party are not a credible contender (nothing to do with Socialist ideals etc…they are not going to get elected)
          The first real option is to put the Lib-Dems back into power. They run close and could easily gain enough seats with the party machine behind them on the Island to mobilise support and help.
          The ONLY other clear option is to increase the Independent Councillors into a majority at County Hall. That requires positive actions, lots of help, lots of manpower and expertise and a clear positive agenda to propose to the electorate.
          It’s a very risky business to run negative campaigns (ie, attacking the current, or other, Political party( it’s better to run a Positive Independent campaign that offers the strength of a non political administration at County Hall.
          A different budget is possible. Money running to small millions CAN be found by a different budget. Re-opening some Tourist offices IS possible. Ditto Toilets. Job creation can be a central objective, as can social care and education.
          And one thing that can (and will) happen is to dispose of this senior level of Directors and Managers/Executives who cost the earth and deliver very little.
          We are going to have to live with the fallout of this administration on the PFI (unless a legal getout is discovered) but notwithstanding that we MUST see off Pugh et al and the block majority of conservatives. It’s imperative for the Island and it’s imperative for the residents…
          Negative comments about clear alternatives is, well, just that….. self defeating and negative.


          • @WW “The first real option is to put the Lib-Dems back into power. They run close and could easily gain enough seats with the party machine behind them on the Island to mobilise support and help.”

            The performance of Clegg and his sheep-like LibDem MPs insacrificing their integrity for power in the Coalition will defeat it in the next election for the next two or three elections.

      • wightywight

        23.Feb.2013 12:06pm

        Enough of this negative nonsense…one Councillor (Whittle) defected…you cannot judge the majority by such minority action.
        I’m interested to understand why you think ‘Independents’ are actually conservatives…? what sort of clear evidence do you have for that?
        Of course an Indpendent will have *views* (political at that!) on certain things…is that the point?
        If you think so then vote for a clear Political Party …and have another 8 years of abject failure.
        If, on the other hand, you can understand that Independents will NOT vote on Political dictat, central office agenda or Party Politics then you can start to understand why an Independent (majority, at least) Council will operate much more democratically and with much more concern for the Island and its’ residents than ANY of the Political Parties…
        I get tired of hearing the somewhat negative responses, often based in little substance, as to why an Independent Council won’t work ….it’s an illusion and one not grounded in much fact, frankly.
        What exactly is your point anyway….? Are you suggesting we all vote for another 4 years of this type of failed Political Dogma..? How about a switch to Libdem party political dogma…?
        If not, what else….?
        Seems to me you are coming close to suggesting that we don’t actually vote!


        • What do mean “Enough of this negative nonsense”? I notice you didn’t direct your dismissive comment at me, but who do you really think you are talking down to? This is an open discussing of peoples views and concerns. They don’t have to conform to what you think and if people don,t express them for fear of being shouted down they wont get aired.
          This is a genuine issue,as you say it has already happened recently and there is absolutely nothing to stop it happening again. Your reassurances don’t hold water.

          • wightywight

            23.Feb.2013 12:32pm


            What evidence have you that the scenario you describe is likely to happen again…?
            On the basis that something has happened once it MUST happen again?
            I’m interested in your notion that my comments are not part of this “open discussion” …interesting!
            I’m not talking “down” to anyone either.
            I am talking……
            So, to address this again, it is *nonsense* to put forward negative ideas that are based upon very little substance..substance such as it’s happened once, it will happen again…or Independents are actually conservatives that change *colour* once elected.
            There is NO evidence to support either of those suggestions and knowing many of the elected Councillors and prospective candidates I’d say that it was going to be highly unlikely.
            You seem like someone who doesn’t want another 4 years of majority conservative rule….if you truly want that may I respectfully suggest you consider the options and the impact on those options of negative comments.
            You appear to be a little stuck, insofar as I am involved, with the messenger….and not the message.
            But your, right….it’s an open discussion allowing me to procrastinate and *prosetylse* alongside everyone else…


          • Bystander

            23.Feb.2013 1:28pm

            @ wightywight “On the basis that something has happened once it MUST happen again?”

            No, On the basis that something has happened once and there is nothing to stop happen again.

            Just suppressing ant talk of it will just sweep the issue under the carpet and do nothing to address a reason which deters people from voting, and not just from voting Independent.

          • Bystander, I wish you wouldn’t keep having a personal go at Wightywight. It makes you sound as though you’re chippie, & overshadows the sensible points you make…

          • Bystander

            24.Feb.2013 8:43am

            @Tryme I don’t know what you mean, perhaps you are putting me on a pedestal? I cant possibly live up to the expectations you have of me if so.

          • There’s no danger of my putting you on a pedestal, Bystander! The sort of remarks that present themselves are ” Who do you really think you are talking down to? This is an open discussing of peoples views and concerns. They don’t have to conform to what you think and if people don’t express them for fear of being shouted down they won’t get aired…..suppressing talk….”

            Noone is shouting you down, suppressing anything, making you conform to what they think, or talking down to you.

          • @Tryme Well you re trying to

          • Sorry guys, this thread is getting a bit boring! :-)

          • @darcy I agree, I think I will try another website.

        • I always vote in elections, local or general.
          I do not always vote for one I want, I vote against the ones I do not want the most.
          I also do not have a good opinion of councillors’ or MP’s, past experience shows me they are only in it for themselves.
          My reference to independents changing colour after being elected referred to both local & general elections.
          That is My view, if you do not like then tuff.

          • wightywight

            23.Feb.2013 1:20pm


            Sounds great Baz……that’s democracy!
            Pleased you explained that you were referring to National and Local elections…. I wasn’t! Only Local.
            You’e by no means alone in having disdain and a bad opinion of Councillors and/or MP’s..the past record is something to behold…
            My point is that we are discussing (i hope) the forthcoming Local Elections on the Island and we are discussing that against a backdrop of 8 years majority conservative administration. There are not too many options…IF you want to see the back of this particular group…. unlike at National level where often there are many condidates for a seat.
            Here, some seats (in 2009) had only two candidates, a conservative and a Lib dem..wel” see what happens in April when candidates register…but the reality of the matter is that there will be few alternatives IF you want to vote out the present incumbents.
            I’m happy to accept your views, no problem with that at all….I hope you can also accept mine?


          • wightywight

            23.Feb.2013 1:56pm


            I agree with you about the *apathy* of voters and that is a big issue to deal with. We’re really not far apart on that issue at all.
            We cannot foretell the future but we have to decide about it nonetheless…. We HAVE to make decisions came May.
            I understand that some (many, as you say) don’t vote. 2/3rds didn’t in 2009 and there’s going to be many individual reasons for that. I suspect as far as Cllr Whittle is concerned he will lose votes as he has lost the confidence of voters who havn’t got a clue who they elected into power!
            I would be adrift if I said that *he* doesn’t affect how people feel about *Independents* in some small way or other. We have to minimise that effect as he truthfully is NOT representative of Independent Councillors (that I have net and spoken to and neither of the candidates I know of)
            For me the issue isn’t we don’t know if an Independent *might* change horse…it’s very unlikely and therefore don’t consider Independents…it’s about convincing enough people that an Independent administration is actually better for the Island and its’ residents because of lots of factors…including there really is not much option if you want the back of the conservatives. Not much at all.
            The Independents are a credible and electable administration..they are a cohesive group (of individuals) and they can and would do a much better job than the present lot. In my view.
            What do you actually want for the Island…? Because, come May you are going to have to choose something…even if that means not voting (not suggesting that anyone does that, by the way)
            The reality is (if you want conservatives out) either a Lib dem administration, an Independent administration, a coalition (you can’t vote for that, of course!) no overall majority …your *choice*…
            ..at least for the Ward you live in…after that it’s down to a whole host of factors..


          • Bystander

            24.Feb.2013 8:39am

            This is all straying away from the comment I originally made saying that once elected a Councillor should not be able to defect to another party without being re elected in a bye election as it betrayed the trust of the electorate. You went on the defensive over that because of Whittle but I wasn’t only referring the the Independents was I? I was referring to all parties and all Councillors.

            As the situation stands what is to stop a rotten-to-the-core Tory standing as an Independent, making all the promises, and fully intending to return to the rotten-to-the-core Tories when he is voted in.

        • I see, Bystander, no scope for self-reflection there then!

    • wightywight

      23.Feb.2013 11:58am

      That’s exactly what is needed….£600 spend limit for Independents (can be more for Political parties!) means not much publicity.
      Canvassers, aides, helpers, agent, polling station helpers anyone who can do anything for FREE (more or less)..even offering to ferry people to and from Polling station in their own car..
      The Political parties can and will wheel out foot soldiers…. let’s turn the mood and movement of Independents into a majority force in County Hall.
      Where are you on the Island…?


      • WW I do agree with you in your thoughts on getting the tories out in our local elections.

      • dream on…Tories may have £500 + to spend campaigning, but noone else has

        • wightywight

          23.Feb.2013 9:38pm



          Read page 49.

          In 2009 the limit was £600 per candidate + 5p per electoral voter in the respective Ward.
          Adding around £100 – £200 on the £600.
          That’s how it works.


          • wrong …that is the guidance and is not the practise (unless your a tory)

            Independents will not have a majority at the next election, and neither will the LibDems.. The very best we can hope for is a ‘hung’ council with the prospect of some ‘Independents’ forming a coalition with the Tories…otherwise, Independents, Libdems and Labour have to work together to fight the Tories once the elction is over.

            Should I win, I will work with anybody who wants the best for my town, Tory or otherwise

          • @ No:5 First of all none of us knows whether the Indies will get an overall majority … just look at how the LibDems were washed away last time. Second whoever gets the most seats will need to work with others – in a spirit of co-operation for the sake of the island.
            A good motto for the island might be: ‘Drop the Dogma’.

          • wightywight

            24.Feb.2013 4:39pm


            WW: “In 2009 the limit was £600 per candidate + 5p per electoral voter in the respective Ward.
            Adding around £100 – £200 on the £600”

            No5: “wrong …that is the guidance and is not the practise ”

            I have no idea what you are on about. And you are completely and utterly wrong. A bit of a worry for someone allegedly standing as a candidate.
            Try this: It’s the 2013 version of the previous link I gave…no mention of “guidance” (something you clearly misunderstand the meaning of in the context given….)

            Read page 7, first sentence.
            Then perhaps you’ll have the courtesy of posting an apology so that those interested and reading my link can be assured the information from the Electoral Commission is indeed correct.

            To summarise, a candidate can spend £600 + 5p per electorate head in the respective Ward.

            Where your ideas come from I have absolutely no idea….and they are wrong.


          • Mark L Francis

            25.Feb.2013 4:06pm

            “Should I win, I will work with anybody who wants the best for my town, Tory or otherwise”

            Are you standing then No 5 ?

  2. Well done to Dave Quigley for setting up these sites. Let’s hope they become a focus for information and informed debate.
    One of the problems that councillors will face on election is the level of funding available to achieve their promises. As much as they may want to get things done, revenue and central funding limitations will thwart (there’s an interesting IW word), their ambitions and may be seen, perhaps unfairly, as failure by supporters and rivals alike.
    Add to this the resistance to change of the island establishment and its mouthpiece, there’s clearly a lot to do. Fortunately web and social networking sites could play a key role in effecting the necessary change.

  3. wightywight

    23.Feb.2013 4:40pm


    How do you think or see that being used for the Independents Darcy…?
    Is Facebook…Twitter etc a real opportunity for Independents…as a group? or as individuals..?
    Obviously there’s OTW but I’m always amazed at the level of knowledge about things that matter and happen here and for which anyone regular here will be *up to speed* about (even if not in minute detail)…yet people I talk to often have absolutely no idea about these issues… it’s quite a worry for election time.


    • @WW
      Just look at how the Pugh petition is spreading. Julia Hill’s target of 200 was smashed yesterday and today is heading towards 500. Much of that I understand is spreading through Facebook. Pugh said on Thursday in the CP that the then 200 signatures only represented 0.5 per cent of the IW electorate. It’s now nearer 1.5 per cent. Remember all parliament needs to trigger a Commons debate on YouGov is 100,000 signatures, around 0.3 per cent of the UK electorate… A much smaller percentage than the IW petition has already achieved.
      I’m sure the Indies can think of a few high profile uses…
      I’m sure Mr Pugh wouldn’t budge if everyone signed it but that’s not the point. The message is getting through slowly and will be remembered by more people come election time.

  4. wightywight

    23.Feb.2013 7:15pm

    Pugh is going to go head to head with a VERY strong candidate…. If the candidate mobilises the support I know he can it’s all over for Pugh….
    That’s only part of the problem though….we still need to get enough people to vote in a majority Independent Council…that’s the goal.
    BTW, still not sure *how* the Facebook thing starts though….


  5. if we don’t want another Tory overall majority, then independents need to work with the LibDems and Labour to achieve a majority…not alianate them with baseless rhetoric.

    An overal majority for Independents is as terrifying as a Tory one…but a lot less likely

    • Scare tactics to stop people voting Independent – to be expected from Tories I suppose. No grounds on which to talk of Independents as “terrifying”, quite the reverse!

      • The last coalition of Independents and Libdems led to the Tory landslide…terrifying indeed.

        Ask Whittles voters whether voting ‘Independent’ made a difference

        • wightywight

          6.Mar.2013 10:06am


          Cllr Whittle is, and was not, representative of current Independent Councillors nor are his actions defendable.
          If your only concern about Independents is the behaviour of of one Mr Whittle then we havn’t got a lot to worry about. He will be gone, and rightly so, in May.
          It’s getting difficult to find fault with the idea of an Independent Council isn’t it…..?


    • wightywight

      6.Mar.2013 10:13am


      The Independents are NOT working with any political party in the run up to the election day….
      After election day we will see what we have….before deciding on what to do. First things first…we have to unseat the conservative majority and replace it with a non political group of Independents…
      You assumption is wrong. We do NOT need to form any alliances to fight and beat off the conservatives…there will be sufficient candidates standing to win overall control …if enough people vote with the thought that we can have a management of the Island without Block Party politics.
      It’s not a given…but it’s a real possibility.
      BTW, UKIP are fielding a few candidates…..quite what or how they are going to offer at a local Island I have no idea (they’re one trick National ponies of course…) but….they WILL split the conservative votes. Fact.


  6. wightywight

    23.Feb.2013 9:11pm

    @no 5:

    care to elaborate on why a majority of Independent Councillors is….”terrifying”…..?
    I’m not sure also what you have in mind with “working with Libdems and Labour” to achieve a majority…

    Why would that be…? and how exactly…?


    • it is terrifying that any ‘party’ ( and I include the ‘Independents’) have an overall majority.

      ‘independents’ has just become another label and is no different to any other political party. The more organised they get the less indpendent they become..soon we will have another Island First..which led to the landslide Tory victory

      The best case scenario is one where the tory majority is reduced so that a coalition can force their hand.. Independents may well be the major party in opposition..and working with Labour and Libdems be able to control Tory excess.

      Being an ‘Independent’ councillor does not ensure a good councillor.

      vote for the best representative for your area…not the label

      • wightywight

        6.Mar.2013 9:28am


        You’re clearly struggling to understand exactly what being an Independent Councillor actually means.
        Let’s *knock this on the head* once and for all.
        Independents are NOT a Political grouping. They are getting organised as a Group of Independents ( as opposed to an Independent group) to offer and co-ordinate an alternative candidate in most/many/all of the Wards. I’m not going into detail but that might, for example, mean that Independents won’t stand against one another in a particular Ward….. It might also mean there are non political ‘group’ objectives’ or issues that affect ALL candidates and for which the same approach is being duplicated for each candidate.
        It also shows to the voter(s) that there is a real positive opportunity to elect a ruling administration from an Independent candidate vote right across the Island. You need not worry about voting for an *Independent* on the basis that the candidate, if elected, will be a lone voice for your Ward….people right across the Island will be assured that in other Wards, others can and will be voting for Independents who will *work together* for the benefit of the Island.
        The big problem you have is to see everyone as a Political group…. whereas the Independents have come together as a group of Independent minded individual candidates to offer a viable alternative to the current ruling group. This group of Independents will work together but they WILL NOT be voting issues through on a Party Political basis….simply because there is NO Party Political ideology.
        THis gets difficult for you Labour (tory/libdem)supporters because you all want to retain glaring Politics in Local Government where none are required.
        So, let’s get this clear, at NO point will the group of Independents become either “more” or “less” organised and operate as a Political group.
        The electorate are going to be offered a clear and overall alternative to 8 years of Political Ideology, supported by 8 years of block voting on Party Policies which will replace this undemocratic process once and for all.
        If enough Independent candidates get elected then there is no need to think about ‘coalitions’ or the conservatives at all. They are to be consigned to the scrapheap and there legacy will be the failure and decline they have overseen over the past 8 years.
        I do not share your “best case scenario” where the conservatives remain in power with a working coalition opposition…the same old tired Political approach once more.
        You have to get into you thinking and understanding that Politics are going to be pushed back in the equation to make way for a more open and democratic process where issues and agendas will be decided on merit and voted on on principles and concerns for the electorate in each and every Ward. A refreshing change from the past 8 years….
        and I havn’t even mentioned the Policies this ruling group have mismanaged to the point of collapse that will be changed (where possible) to benefit the Island and NOT the conservative Party.
        Difficult concept for you but for many Island residents this is the moment they have been waiting for over the past 4 years….it also will be the first time the Independents will have achieved overall control of the Council and be able to make the changes this Island desperately need….
        Just to put straight also, your inference of Island First. That was a coalition where the Libdems held the most seats and worked with the Independents who held the least seats in the Coalition….a tad different then from having Independents running the Council…..don’t you think?


        • Excellent summary which also deals with the failed Lib Dem- led Island First initiative – good idea in principle but was still dominated by party politics.
          If in doubt … kick ’em out!

          • Do my eyes deceive me or is one of those involved in the failed Lib Dem First initiative now standing as an Independent?

      • wightywight

        6.Mar.2013 10:14am

        @No 5:

        go tell that to the dyed in the wool Labour and Conservative supporters who put crosses against red and blue WHOEVER is the candidate. Politics is the PROBLEM…not the answer!


  7. OK. Without making any comments about current incumbents or the chances of this or that outcome, I find that there’s no useful information out there to help me decide who to vote for or support.
    Please can someone provide a map of the Island that shows the wards and the current councillors with the numbers of votes they got in the last election as well as the votes their opposition got. When new candidates register they can be added to the list. Then it’ll be possible to see who is standing where and possibly alliances can be made or support concentrated so resources won’t be wasted and effort squandered when the election comes.
    Parties are by definition organised and better-informed. Equally by definition Independents aren’t, but there’s no reason why they have to be.

    • wightywight

      24.Feb.2013 1:01pm


      Along with sam salt’s help (below)
      also see here:


      for general Ward area Map…


      for a listing

      The Boundary Commission website has detailed close up maps…but take some finding!

      In 2009, just so that there is no confusion over the dedication of the Major Political Parties come election time, especially the conservatives…

      Conservatives fielded 40 candidates (every Ward)
      Lib Dems fielded 35 candidates.
      Labour fielded 16 candidates.
      Independents fielded 24 candidates.

      Conservatives gained 25 seats
      Libdems gained 4 seats
      Independents gained 9 seats.
      Labour gained 1 seat.

      The Libdems had a very poor return for the amount of candidates…about 11% the Independents were second with about 24% and the Conservatives were by far and away the most successful with around 62% success rate (converting candidate into an elected Councillor, that is)

      Make no mistake the Conservatives are a well oiled machine with lots of resources at their disposal. There doesn’t appear to be much stomach for Lib Dems from the 2009 showing but there’s great encouragement from the Independent standing in 2009 even with the enormous conservative majority.
      This time round the Independents will be a tad more organised albeit without a Political Party backing and support.
      It’s why the Independents nee people to help…if you feel that an Independent is the way forward please get in touch with the local candidate (announced about 30 days before election date)and offer to do something….anything. Canvassing even…
      Let’s try and get the change that I detect many, many people in here actually want to see happen. Without help it just won’t. sadly.


  8. Try this link Jonathan for the 2009 results http://www.iwight.com/council/election2009/Declaration_of_results_IOWC.pdf
    Just copy and past to your browser.
    Candidates for this years elections not as yet announced, probably be April some time for a definitive list.

  9. I know the removal of DP is only part of the island problem, but I think that when a member of the electorate feels strongly enough to start a petition, then if we agree with the sentiment we should support it and them. It might not be the way many of you budding politicians would do it but I feel Julia Hill should be encouraged. Signatures are only a stone’s throw from 500, already two and a half times the original target. For those of you interested the link is below, moderator permitting!

  10. If you analyse the 2009 IWC election results then you will find that more than half Islander (22703)did not bother to vote (i.e. more than the total votes gained by the Conservatives.)

    The share of the votes was Tory (21813), Labour (2093) Independent (9351), Lib/Dem (11109) and Other (2447)

    Thus as percentages of votes ACTUALLY cast Tories (49%) Labour (4.7%). Independent (21.01%) Lib/Dem (24.96%) Other(5.5%).

    BUT as percentages of the TOTAL Island electorate it was Tories (19.76%) Labour (1.9%) Independents (8.47%) Lib/Dems (10.06%) and Other (2.22%).

    In 9 wards the Tory majority was less than 100: in 15 less than 200: in 19 less than 300: and in 21 less than 400

    The Tories won for three reasons: firstly, they were far better at getting their supporters out to vote: secondly: nearly half the Islanders could not be bothered to vote and thirdly, voted Tory as a reaction against the lying of the Blair government and the mismanagement of the Brown government.

    In 2013, it could well be that voters are similarly disaffected with the local Tory and Westminster Tory/LibDem governments and will react accordingly.

    Yet the danger is that result would be the same as 2009 IF half the Islanders sit on their hands again and non-Tory candidates are more not successful in getting their supporters to turn out to vote.

    So there is everything to play for!

  11. Don Smith

    5.Mar.2013 11:52pm

    All these Independent candidates appear to be just feathering their own nests.

    What is needed is one voice, and candidates in every ward. If there is not, we will finish up with the staus quo; a handful of Independants with no clout whatsoever!

    Disorganised comes to mind.

  12. wightywight

    6.Mar.2013 12:47am

    I tire of your assertions at times Don.
    Whatever do you mean by “feathering their own nests”…..? and what evidence have you to even suggest and support such assertion?
    Actually, when you say “one voice” ..I suppose you mean *your* one voice?
    The electorate decide who gets elected, not you and your plans Don so the best that anyone can do is to stand for election and hope that people vote for them. The Political Partys’are organised in that respect by getting candidates into many/most/all of the Wards… However, here’s the thing. This time the Independents are as organised as they have ever been with candidates standing in many of the Wards, with a generally clear idea about what they want, how they can achieve it and a plan for administration of the Council. The only difference is that they do not hold traditional group Political ideologies that when in Power squash the democratic process by block voting. Independents will largely vote upon the issues before them and on an individual basis with a non political consideration.
    You appear to confuse all of this *organisation* with your own understanding of “dis-organisation”.
    I am wary of your motives especially when considered against your continued reference to “Tory Island” and believe you may well be acting in the interests of conservatives rather than anyone else… If I’m wrong, feel free to contradict me please…


  13. danielclarke

    21.Mar.2013 5:04pm

    We have bad memories of so-called independents running the council with the lib dems between 2001 and 2005 when they drastically raised the council tax year by year.

    • Meursault

      21.Mar.2013 5:36pm

      From a nonpartisan point of view increasing taxes during a period of significant growth is pretty prudent fiscal management.

      When the ‘so-called’ left office there was, off the top of my head, around £7m put aside in reserves for a period when it was needed to bolster spending. I would also say that was pretty prudent financial management.

      Then Cllr Sutton took the helm and instigated a series of unsustainable policies including freezing council tax – right in the middle of a boom (???!!!) – not sure what school of economics he studied, but very few across the spectrum would consider that best practice.

      Then at the close of the ruling Tory admins second term they have turned the inherited £7m credit into a £9m deficit, decimated services, screwed up the school system, adult care, asset stripped, entered a dangerous PFI programme because they have no other option…and so on.

      Again from a nonpartisan point of view I fail to see, in comparison with the current ruling group, what bad memories at all you are referring too? Indeed they were a little slow, not very sexy, spent little on comms etc. but at the end of the day that’s what I want from my local authority. If I don’t see or hear about them, then they are doing their job correctly.

      • Wasn’t it the ‘so-called’s who splashed out on laptops and Indian head massages for Councillors?

        • Meursault

          21.Mar.2013 6:12pm

          Think that is small change compared to turning a one-man-band comms team into an entire floor of County Hall.

          • You might be right but the perception of such crass decisions calls into question the judgement of those who made and approved them. They are the sorts of things voters remember

          • Then voters should learn to keep a sense of proportion…

          • I can’t believe you said that! David Pugh or George Osborne maybe but not you.

          • Well, I’m not an elected representative, am I! It’s not a crime to suggest that a sense of proportion is desirable, Darcy.

            Laptops are a normal part of working life, and an efficient means on which to email colleagues and ward residents; and set against the millions wasted by the current administration, the cost of these and a few head massages is hardly commensurate.

          • @tryme
            I think you might be missing my point. At the time these laptops and head massages were being given out, we were suffering council tax rises of about 14 per cent a year. Laptops were not as cheap or as common ten years ago and I recall that most of us then considered the council to have better things to spend their money on. Once again it’s all to do with perception and common sense … Qualities that many of our local politicians seem to lack then and now, although many still manage to retain a degree of contempt for voter’s opinions which is what your response seemed to reflect.

          • Not at all. I refer you to my earlier answer, Darcy.

          • And!! I was carrying what you were saying to a logical conclusion, Darcy, which seemed to be that if voters thought as you said, then you were presuming they would take a disproportionate view. My comment was to highlight this by exaggeration, given factors that I thought outweighed what you said. I was suggesting that they wouldn’t be so misguided.

            (I think it loses something in the explanation!)

    • Yes but weren’t the Lib Dems the architects of the huge Council Tax rises which did for them in the end. Conversely the Tory three year freeze on Council Tax rises has denied them the finances to save many of the services they have decimated in the past four years.
      Incidentally Gordon Kendall, a former LibDem County Councillor, is standing as an Independent with Jonathan Bacon. Does this mean he has seen the light?

      • Meursault

        21.Mar.2013 6:20pm

        I don’t think it was the Council Tax rises, the incoming Tory group were a very well-oiled machine during the 2005 election and could have got in with very little substance at all. The ‘So-calleds’ were too much of a rag-tag muddle of slightly differing points of view – think they are called Lib Dems? ;-)

        The main damage was done by Cllr Sutton’s leadership, the Vera years et al. Where they increased spending massively whilst holding council tax – which even my young nephew with a few crayons could work out wouldn’t stack up.

        Even though Pugh’s leadership has been one slow-motion car crash after another, they didn’t have a very strong starting point – as the prior cabinet had spent or committed all of the funds.

      • I don’t think the former LibDem Councillor will have seen the light. He was, in my view, and that of many others a poor councillor. Let’s not forget he started as a Lib Dem, moved to Island First and is now an Independent. A man who appears not to know his own mind.

        • That’s the problem in voting Independent, don’t you think?

          • I don’t think you can ring fence independents as people who do not know their own minds Stewart. You only have to look at Jonathan Bacon, Vanessa Churchman and Chris Welsford to see this. All have done exceptional jobs at representing their wards. They have also shown a willingness to work with others. I do think though that across the board from all political parties there are weak candidates, even serving councillors. One must also ask why the likes of Edward Giles is moving wards, it is all political. All any of us can do is vote for the best candidate on the day. I just hope Shanklin and Wootton wake up to who they could put in place.

          • Whippingham ward would be downwind of the noxious Asphalt plant whereas Wootton is far enough away? :-))

        • From the downticks, it appears that the Tory PR machine is reading OTW! :-))

    • @danielclarke’s, I also remember 2001-2005, the lib dems were responsible for the drastic rises in council tax. Many of them were out of their depth, throwing toys out of their prams and when they fell out they formed break away groups. The independents of today are not the same as those of 8 -12 years ago, most of those dinosaurs are now gone. Thank goodness we have a new breed of intelligent, hard working people willing to stand as independents.

      • I totally agree Sam. Jonathan Bacon has been a brilliant councillor who has stood up for our ward in difficult circumstances. But I have a dilemma as I have two votes. Should I vote for the label or the person?

        • @darcy, a real dilemma. Perhaps we might see the brilliant Mike Tarrant come forward for UKIP, a good man. I am also in the same dilemma. Mary Collis? Me thinks not. Geoff The Joiner Giles, ineffectual, pleasant guy or Gordon Kendall, bad track record and swings between parties. No news of a labour yet candidate yet. Perhaps you should have stood Darcy, you after all did more for the library than Giles and Kendall put together.

  14. phil jordan

    21.Mar.2013 6:23pm


    Let’s just get this straight and correct right away.

    In 2001 – the “so called” Independents had 8 seats (one of which was Roger Mazillius!) which they joined with the Lib Dems 17 seats.
    You can call that running the Council if you wish ( I wouldn’t) ….. the reality was that the LIb dems were in control with the balance of power held by the 8 Independents.There was a ‘working’ arrangement…a far cry from “running the Council”.

    In 2005, the conservatives were returned to overall power and control with 35 seats….need I say any more?

    I hear this sort of argument raised from time to time without much basis in fact. The fact is the Independents have not had a shot at “running the Council”…….yet!
    They supported the Lib Dems in 2001..no more, no less.

    In May 2013, there is perhaps the best opportunity to return for the very first time, a majority of Independent Councillors that will make a difference to the way this Island is managed. If you wish to see democracy in action, to see people put before politics, voting on issues based upon Island interests rather than political ideology and block votes… then vote for an Independent candidate.
    If you want to witness and experience more of the past 8 years for another 4 years or more, the block voting, political ideology, cuts, property sell offs, dubious management decisions, stifling of democratic debates and further decline of this beautiful Island…..put a cross in the box of the ruling group candidate.

    I suggest to you that you, or anyone, will have to suspend all rationality to even contemplate that course of action.

    phil jordan
    Independent candidate

  15. I couldn’t agree less, Daniel. If you see the Independents in action at Council meetings, you could not fail to be unimpressed. There is no cohesion of argument nor joined-up thinking. Several of them are closet Tories.

    If, as you suggest, there were to be a ‘majority Independent administration after May 2nd, they would have no option but to become an organised (whipped) group if they were to have any chance of running the Council. And if they do that – whither goes their ‘Independence’? QED.

    • phil jordan

      21.Mar.2013 8:27pm

      @stewart blackmore:

      This is an absolute fallacy and one that needs addressing.
      The first misunderstanding is the meaning of being an Independent. Independents tend to hold no particular political belief system but will have views and ideas across a whole spectrum of *political* landscapes. In the absence of a cohesive political dogma, Independents would be free to vote upon issues and motions according to a whole plethora of reasons which will also include, in no small way, the wishes of their Ward electorates. What they will not do is block vote out of any ideology and political philosophy which is so indicative and representative of the large political parties.
      Quite how you understand the word “organisation” can also be another misunderstanding.
      If there is a majority of Independent Councillors on May 3rd there will be the need to vote in a Leader and proceed from there.
      It is not essential, indeed not necessary, to have party politics involved in the administration of this Council. Only the major political parties want that and therefore attack from the notion that you cannot have a ruling group of Independent minded Councillors. It’s an utter, absolute fallacy.
      There are thousands and thousands of companies, clubs, groups and more all over the country that function and operate with a management of individuals coming together to administer the function they are tasked with. There is, and would be, differences of opinion, different ideas and different beliefs….none of that prevents these companies, these groups, these clubs from functioning succesfully.
      And so it is with running a Council administration, in the same way, that decisions are taken by a democratic vote and therefore by the majority of those tasked with managing the Council. There is absolutely nothing wrong with that and it is in stark contrast to how this administration is currently working where democracy is ignored by block political voting…voting on issues for no other reason than the ruling group insist their members vote on in a particular way. Hence, since 2009, we have not seen ONE ruling group Councillor vote against a ruling group motion.
      It is a simple premise actually. A motion is presented to Council and is voted upon. Each Independent Councillor will either vote for, or against, the motion or they will abstain (nullifying their ‘notional’ vote).
      That will arrive at a yes or no to the motion and that is how the democratic management will work. There is absolutely no need to have any block philosophy, block voting or whipping to achieve a fair and democratic outcome.
      The problem is that political groups and parties cannot see anything outside politics….
      You do not need politics to run the Council…you need Councillors with integrity and honesty and a desire to improve this Island for all concerned. Party politics are destroying that as we are witnessing right now…not the prospect of a group of Island Independents managing things for the benefit of everyone…not just the few.

      Phil Jordan
      Independent candidate

  16. Well, Phil, you wrote an awful lot to say not much. You say that there are thousands of organisations with independent minded people making them up; so much is obvious, but in the last local elections in 2012 there was not a single council in the country which went to Independent control. Some DID go to No Overall Control which is completely different.

    I do not doubt the sincerity of your views but I do not agree with them. In recent council elections on the Island some so-called Independents have jumped to the Tories as soon as they deemed it favourable – the most obvious being Roger Mazillius.

    There ARE independent minded political party members, just that none of the Tory Councillors on the Island have demonstrated an independent thought between them; just look at the voting records. Every Full Council vote and every Cabinet vote has seen that the Tories ALWAYS vote with the Leadership without exception. On that score I agree with you, but who is to say that a majority Independent administration would not do exactly the same were they to be in power?

    I am standing in Ventnor West as the Labour candidate but I am standing for the good of Ventnor BEFORE party. That is the deal. I speak to many residents every day and they are sick and tired at the contempt in which they are held by the present administration and they want somebody who will genuinely represent their views. As a Ventnor resident of 30 years standing that is what I promise to do and, believe me, if I for one moment thought that my party would not allow this I wouldn’t be standing under its banner.

    Independents do not have the monopoly on principle, and by declaring themselves to be Independent does not mean that they will, by virtue of their (professed) independence be any better that those with party allegiances. That is for every voter to decide for themselves.

    As far as Sam Salt’s comments go, I agree with him about Chris (although he would have been far more effective at Council if he had allied himself to reflect his true political leanings) and Jonathan, but have severe reservations about Vanessa’s chairmanship of the Overview and Scrutiny Committee – a misnomer if ever there was one.

    This Council has been an unmitigated disaster for the people of Ventnor, never mind the Island, and I fervently hope that electors will feel moved to vote on May 2nd to remove them. There is no reason why Independents, Liberals, Labour & Greens could not work together for the common good. Is there?

  17. phil jordan

    22.Mar.2013 12:18am

    @stuart blackmore:

    I responded primarily stuart because you asserted that Independents cannot run the Council unless they become “organised”…and if they become organised they are no longer “Independent”.
    I’ve explained that many organisations operate successfully being run by “Independent” (not political independent)people who come together and administer. They do not need to all hold the same beliefs to achieve that. Your premise fails at this point stuart since you appear unable to understand this very basic point.
    Unfortunately, we have now seen just what political groups and political ideology can and does do to this Island. Independent candidates are NOT confined by this tired old methodology and can make decisions for the Wards and for the Island without political hindrance. It seems to me that many from the Political parties are obsessed with this ability and cannot figure out why it could be this way!
    It is clear that Island Independents are offering a different way from the party politics and that proposition is gathering support from many quarters of the electorate. Rest assured that if a clear majority of Independent Councillors is elected on May 2nd there will be an Independent Council for the first time and that Council will function in every respect as a capable and working administration. But stuart, once again you seem to fail to grasp the fundamental. Principles are not confined to any individual…but Independent principles mean there is no influence other than personal principles. That cannot be said for the principles of any member of a political party as the ideology, philosophy and tenets of the political party affect the personal principles of the member and their views – views which quite probably drew them into becoming a member of that political party in the first place.
    There’s no monopoly on independent thought but true independence comes from not being affiliated to a political party.
    Like you and many Island residents feel, this administration has run it’s course, it’s tired, dogmatic, inept and a disaster for the Island..never mind Ventnor!
    We agree on that and so, it seems, do many Islanders…that’s a good start. As Island Independents we are offering a different way, free from political shackles and with different ideas on how to manage things.. a fresh approach without political affiliations and political dogma. We have a strong team, a strong message and a strong chance of success and on May 2nd we shall learn whether Islanders want to make a change for the better or stay with the same washed up ruling group. It’s quite probably as simple as that. Best wished for your own candidature…

    phil jordan
    Independent candidate

  18. We have no Independents standing in Newport West Electoral Division.
    Westlake UKIP, Whitehouse Conservative & Whittaker ex Conservative,

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