Four years ago, just prior to local elections, our association felt it would be helpful to ask
pertinent questions of all candidates. As a result, we received very favourable feedback from
residents and candidates. We believe it will be useful to repeat the exercise and hope the
answers below will assist you when casting your vote on Thursday 02 May 2019. Please
excuse presentation –just want to get the newsletter to you asap!
Best wishes Mike Randall (Chair PBA)
Question 1: How will you ensure the interests of residents (particularly at
Whitecliff and Baiter Park) are fully represented at the new council and not just
steam-rollered by the Bournemouth majority?
Question 2: How will you respond if interests of your residents are at odds with
decisions or recommendations made by your party at BCP level?
Question 3: ‘Travellers’ is one of the most sensitive issues faced by residents with
regular incursions at Whitecliff and Baiter Park. How can you address concerns of
SUE AITKENHEAD (Labour)
1. Living within Poole Town ward, I am extremely keen to represent my neighbours and
residents to the best of my abilities. The current opposition groups made up of Poole People
and Liberal Democrats have failed to stand up to the current leaders of Poole Council, and I
feel that they will fail again now the council has combined. Labour has made commitments in
our manifesto to speak to our residents on a regular basis, holding surgeries so we can
listen to their concerns and then act on them in the council. As a Labour group, we can
ensure that your voice is heard.
2. Having been a councillor previously for several years, I think that being part of a group is a
really positive thing in council. With a large group of Labour councillors together, supporting
each other and working together, we can collaborate on issues and end up voting together
as a Labour group – unlike the independents who are often left as a lone voice. A party whip
in local government is not like what you hear about in national politics. We would be elected
to represent our ward and, if there are issues affecting our ward, this is taken into account,
Labour councillors can vote against their whip for issues affecting their own ward.
3. Once elected, Labour will seek to hold talks with both the residents and the Traveller
community. It is important that we seek a resolution which works for both parties and
ensures that our parks and public spaces are not left open to be used in the wrong way. We
would work towards ensuring that there is a permanent traveller site for use during their
visits which would cut down on any disputes between those and local residents. Right now,
the council is offering no solution.
PHILLIPA CONNOLLY (Labour)
1. I believe that Poole needs a strong, co-ordinated team to stand up for Poole residents
within the new super council. We know that the decision to merge the councils was not
something that everyone in Poole would have made, but now it has happened we need to
have a strong voice on that council by electing councillors who will attend all meetings, work
as a disciplined team without ego or in-fighting. Poole Labour Party has an extremely
smooth working relationship with both Bournemouth and Christchurch Labour Parties, the
more Labour councillors elected to this council, the stronger your voice through us will be.
2. As a Labour councillor, foremost our duty is to the residents living within the ward we
represent. If elected, although I will be part of a Labour Group, this is much more positive
than people realise. A strong team of Labour councillors can work together to tackle issues
that no lone independent council could. For issues within my ward, I would be work together
with the Labour Group, explain local concerns and get them voting alongside me. Within a
Labour Group, you are allowed dispensation also for voting on issues that affect your ward.
3. I believe that a solution can be found if both parties talk to each other, rather than the
current council having to chase the traveller community from public land every few weeks
throughout the summer. Apart from this action, the council is not seeking a solution. Labour
will begin talks to stop the conflict between them and local residents.
XENA DION (Conservative)
1. This is one of the main reasons I wish to continue as a Ward Councillor. I am passionate
about Poole and everything we are proud of. I am not afraid to speak out strongly for what is
right and good for Poole and feel the same concerns as other residents about being
‘steamrollered’ by the Bournemouth majority. Having Christchurch in the new authority
brings a helpful balance.
2. I have, over important issues, voted against my Group e.g. closing the toilets at Baiter and
in my fight to win European Maritime Day for Poole. Group discussions are the best place to
raise the issues from residents and to ensure their views are heard but all councillors have
an obligation to work towards what is the best for the whole of our Town. My concerns are
that this ‘overall good’ now includes Bournemouth and Christchurch and having councillors
not afraid to strongly voice and support the views of Poole’s residents is essential.
3. I fully understand the frustrations we all have with these unlawful and unwanted
incursions. I argued against the Council protecting a number of sites as I believed it would
just concentrate incursions into a very small number of places and this is exactly what has
happened and Baiter is suffering.
One advantage in the new authority is more effective working together to find a permanent
temporary site which means the police can move travellers who are unlawfully camped on to
those sites within 24 hours. We endeavoured to find a permanent temporary site in Poole 3
or 4 years ago and there was absolutely no place suitable, so I am optimistic we may find a
solution. The government did a consultation to better manage Gypsies and Travellers and I
am still waiting to see the outcome and report.
L-J EVANS (Poole People Party)
1. I have lived in Poole for nearly 15 years and walk my dog at least once a day on Baiter. If
elected as a Poole Town Councillor I will be persistent and vocal in representing my
Residents and work with Councillors of all parties to ensure that Poole’s voice is heard.
2. Although elected under the banner of Poole People Party I will be an Independent
Councillor and free to make up my own mind on all decisions. I intend to use social media
and other avenues to listen to people’s concerns so that they can be represented fairly.
3. As a regular user of Baiter Park I am fully aware of this issue and the measures taken by
the Council in the past to remedy it. I hope that in future we can work with the Travelling
Community to come up with a compromise over (temporary) use of the site, rather than
building more and more defences
ANDY-GARNER WATTS (Conservative)
1. As a BCP Councillor and a firm believer in democracy I would support any majority
decision made by the new council
2. I would hope to fully explain my reasons to residents if given an opportunity to do so
3. As BCP has a much bigger area we will be looking as soon as possible to establish a
temporary traveller site. This would allow police to move travellers to that site with immediate
effect. I believe this will be a really effective deterrent
ANDY HADLEY (Poole People Party)
1. I think we will have to work hard to ensure that the interests of Poole (and Baiter/
Whitecliff) residents are not overpowered. I have already been working with other
independent-minded parties across the conurbation to try and help ensure that we have a
reasonable group in the new Council who are prepared to fight for respect and responses to
local priorities. We were successful in getting Baiter toilets reopened –closed by Tories
2. Poole People does not force Members to vote in a particular way, I hope that anyone who
has been to council meetings will know that the existing Poole People Councillors are often
the first to raise concerns with proposals, and we actively represent issues that have been
raised by our residents, including successfully getting the toilets at Baiter Park re-opened
3. I have campaigned alongside Mark Howell (Poole People Party) to get the Baiter car park
entrance narrowed, and also get constraints on the swimming pool car park, Copse Close
and Sterte Green. We have raised repeatedly that Tories have shirked responsibility to have
a transit site that police can move travellers onto, and with the formation of BCP, we must
work across the conurbation and lobby national government to address the issue properly
MARK HOWELL (Poole People Party)
1. I have lived and worked in Poole town centre for 15 years and have a strong connection to
my local community so I understand the issues that concern residents. If elected, I will seek
to work with Poole People colleagues and other independently-minded minded councillors to
counter the negative effects of the whip imposed by the national parties and give more say
2. Poole People councillors are free to vote with their consciences so I would vote in the
interests of residents of Poole Town ward every time.
3. In my time as a councillor, I have pushed the Council to improve the defences of Baiter
and Whitecliff, which resulted in the narrowing of Harbourside 2’s entrance, higher
earthworks and stronger gates. Harbourside 1 is more difficult to address because the public
need access for their motor homes and boats. My focus would be on preventing access to
grassed areas and campaigning for a transit site, which would enable the police to move
travellers on more easily.
WILLIAM VICTOR KIMMET (Independent)
1. If I am elected to the council for Poole I will fight for the residents of Poole as their
councillor and make sure we do not lose out
2. I will respond in any way I can to make sure the interests of all Poole residents are
represented on the new council and not only are Bournemouth and Christchurch residents’
interests are heard
3. I will go back to the old days when councillors used to walk around their ward and if I see
any travellers at Baiter or Whitecliff I will make sure the council has them removed twentyfour
hours after they arrive
SIMON LANE (Independent)
1. I will try my best to get Poole treated fairly
2 I will act for the people of Poole and do what is right for Poole
3. I will do regular patrols and if I see travellers coming I will get them removed in 24 hours
ANDY PROCTOR (Labour)
1. As a local resident myself, living on Stanley Road, I care deeply about the area I
am standing to represent. Labour, as a group, will be a force for good and if we are in
opposition will hold the Conservatives to account, whether they are from Bournemouth,
Christchurch or Poole. I know that the decision to merge councils has worried many
residents, but I do not believe the poor way in which our current council has been run is due
to where the councillors have come from. It’s been because of their policies. Labour
councillors will hold monthly ward surgeries and be easily available to listen to the concerns
and thoughts of residents so that we can try and be your voice in the council chambers.
2. There is a lot of misunderstanding over what a “Party Whip” does within local government.
Councillors are elected to represent all residents within their ward, and this goes for Labour
Councillors too. Issues affecting individual wards are taken into account when discussed
within the Labour Group of councillors and dispensation to vote against the Party Whip is
granted on these occasions. But it should also be recognised that being part of a group is a
positive thing. For example, if there is a large political group and individual ward councillors
can convince them to support their point of view, then the whole group might end up voting
the same way and getting things done. Ultimately, a group of independents don’t have any
3. If I am elected, I will meet with both the resident and traveller communities and seek to
find a solution to the issue. This may include looking at providing at permanent site
elsewhere in the conurbation or some other way of settling the issue. However, what we
must avoid is this situation from occurring every year without any solution.
Although contacted at least twice we have not received responses from
TOM LINTERN-MOLE (Conservative)JOHN COX, TIM JOYCE, QUENTEN WALKER (Liberal D