Anger over ‘beaten candidates’ standing in postponed election

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RESIDENTS have hit out at beaten election candidates who switched wards after a councillor’s death postponed a vote.

The South Kesteven District Council election in Deeping St James was delayed following the death of long-serving councillor and candidate Ken Joynson (Lib Dem) on May 3, two days before the vote.

Four new candidates put their names forward to stand with the six remaining nominees on the new date of June 23.

But residents have accused them of opportunism because all four were defeated in other wards at the original elections.

Mike Exton (Con) and Ashley Baxter (Green) stood in the Market Deeping ward, while Peter Morris (Lib Dem) stood in Aveland and Janire Morris (Lib Dem) stood in Ringstone.

Only Mr Baxter, who was elected to the Deeping St James Parish Council on May 5, actually lives in the village.

The Mercury received a letter from seven residents objecting to the new candidates.

Malcolm Hoadley, of Eastgate, said: “It’s strange that people from outside the village have put their names forward after not getting in the first time round.

“It seems they are jumping in desperate to get in anywhere.

“I would rather they weren’t allowed to stand, although I know they are entitled to.

“They are taking advantage of the situation. I would hate to think that local people may not get an opportunity because of this.”

Margaret Fleming, also of Eastgate, added: “To have people who don’t live here representing us seems like the wrong answer.

“I don’t think a lot of people will realise what is happening.

“The new candidates are jumping into Deeping St James when they failed somewhere else.

“I hope that people from the village will be representing it after the election.”

The six original candidates are Ray Auger (Con), Michael Bossingham (Green), Phil Dilks (unaffiliated), Philip Hammersley (Lib Dem), Judy Stevens (Independent) and Robert Thomas (Con).

There are three seats available in the ward.