Labour’s County Council election campaign in the Bridgwater area kicked off today with a targetted leaflet drop in the new Stockmoor development on the edge of the town. Although this new-build housing project is seperated from Bridgwater merely by the Stockmoor rhyne it forms part of the North Petherton division for the County Council election and in terms of voting history is a completely new demographic to factor into the equasion and could provide Labour with the boost it needs to take this key county seat from the Tories.
Labour’s candidate, 23 year old Bridgwater shop manager Oliver Barratt, is a recently graduated Law student and with his youthful energy was the first of the local candidates off the mark with his leafleting campaign offering the people of Stockmoor a genuine alternative to Tory rule at County hall and showing that Labour was taking the North Petherton campaign seriously.
One third of the potential North Petherton Vote is on Stockmoor
Olly said “Stockmoor is crucial to us because there’s over 1,000 people living here and although they’re on the very edge of Bridgwater they’re a community in themselves,with a school and some shops on the way but very little in terms of public services, facilities and amenities. One third of the potential vote in this division will come from this little area and responses so far show strong support for Labour.”
The North Petherton ward also includes the town itself which has had a checkered political history often being represented by independently minded councillors but has in recent years been dominated by Tories from the outlying villages. “It’s a key seat for Labour to take if the Tories are to be toppled from their disastrous control of County” said Labours sitting county councillor for Bridgwater North & Central Dave Loveridge who was out on the leafletting trail with Ollie ” also the previous Tory councillor has stood down and now they’ve got some new candidate-yet again from one of the smaller villages – standing . On top of that the Tory vote will be split because UKIP are also standing and they’re basically an even more right wing version of the Conservatives.”
fighting for improved amenities
Sedgemoor Labour group leader Mick Lerry was also helping Ollie leaflet today and together they talked to campaigners on the stockmoor estate who have been fighting for improved amenities . Mick said “The new Somerset Bridge primary school, serving the Wilstock/Stockmoor Village development, is already oversubscribed. Together, Somerset Bridge and North Petherton school will surely struggle to accommodate the families of the proposed Hinkley workforce.”
Oliver said “I share the disappointment of the local people that such a large estate has no playing fields or play equipment for young people to use. As a councillor, I would press local authorities to help both schools cope with the added pressure, as well as to ensure that local amenities are adequate to support the increasing population.”
The Somerset County Council election will be held on Thursday May 2nd and the Stockmoor Polling Station will be at the Somerset Bridge school