• Let’s meet up at the Ranmoor Inn

    57124413I’m delighted to be holding a Question & Answer session at the Ranmoor Inn, Fulwood Road at 7pm on Wednesday 29 April.

    I’ll be chatting about why I’m standing and what I hope to achieve. And I’ll be listening to what people have to say.

    It would be great to see you there.

  • BBC Radio Sheffield debate

    Screen Shot 2015-04-18 at 09.27.57BBC Radio Sheffield have organised an election debate on Wednesday 22 April at Nether Green Methodist Church.

    The BBC has excluded me from sitting on the Panel because I’m not a member of a political party and haven’t stood for election before. I think that terribly undemocratic and illustrates the uphill struggle everyday people face when trying to make a difference.  It’s an attitude that maintains the status quo, a system that I believe is broken and needs radical change.

    The BBC has said that I can join the audience.  I’ll be going along. You can too. Please join me if you can.

    You can book your place on the BBC Radio Sheffield website.

    Let’s fight for your democracy and our right to choose.


  • Listening to people

    Delivering in GreystonesIt was great to be out in the streets of Sheffield Hallam again today with some of the campaign supporters. Beautiful sunshine, beautiful city.

    Again and again, I have found people really eager to talk about the issues they face and their disillusionment with party politics and Nick Clegg in particular. Without the baggage of a political party, it is easy for me to relate to those feelings and to genuinely sympathise.

    A couple of conversations today really stood out.

    In one, I was greeted with the words “If that is another bloody election leaflet then don’t bother, it’ll go straight in the bin.” Like all the residents in Sheffield Hallam, this lady has been deluged with letters, flyers and ‘magazines’ from the political parties. The Lib Dems and Labour are spending a fortune here. And lots of people are sick to death of it. The lady and I talked for more than 30 minutes at the end of which she said “I wasn’t going to vote but I promise you I’ll vote for you. And can I have some flyers for my friends?”

    Listening to people, I turned a “Not another bloody election flyer” into a “I’ll vote for you”

    In another conversation, I chatted to a man with a Labour poster in his window. He knew nothing of the Labour candidate or indeed any of Labour’s policies but such was his anger at Nick Clegg that he was prepared to vote for anyone else just to get rid of him. I hear a lot of stories like that. I completely understand where they are coming from – I voted for Clegg too and will never vote LibDem again. But it illustrates a worrying feature of this election here: people are voting tactically against one party or another rather than voting for something they believe in. This runs every risk of leaving people quickly disillusioned with their choice of vote.

    When people ask me, as this man did today, whether I am worried about splitting the anti-Clegg vote, I say this – rather than relying on negative voting, I want to give people the option of voting for someone they can trust, someone they can believe in, someone who will act in their interests.

    Only an Independent can genuinely represent the people of a constituency. That’s what I intend to do. And that’s why people across Sheffield Hallam are saying “Yes, I’ll vote for you.”