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Letter: News Clipping Reminded Me of Previous Independent Councillors

Published on: 3 Oct, 2018
Updated on: 3 Oct, 2018

From Bernard Parke

hon alderman and former Mayor of Guildford

Whilst sorting through some old papers I came across a copy of an old copy of the Surrey Advertiser.

It carried news of the then coming local election of that year, 1959, the year when Harold McMillian said that we had “never had it so good”.

I was surprised to read that the Tories with Independents were pitched against, what the paper called, “Socialists”.

Independent candidates played a positive part in borough affairs at that time. Such a revival of such locally motivated people unshackled by national party ties could happen once again if suitable people come forward and offer their services.

I do know that the cost of fielding Tory candidates was not welcomed, at the time, by the local Guildford Conservative Association as it put a considerable strain not only on finance but on manpower.

The association’s main task was to send a Conservative to Westminster and to also to help marginal constituencies to do the same.

Perhaps the time has come once again for local resident associations and societies to seriously consider fielding their own nominees next May? Local residents who will not bound by party dogma but be free to speak out for the people that they actually represent.


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Responses to Letter: News Clipping Reminded Me of Previous Independent Councillors

  1. Bernard Parke Reply

    October 4, 2018 at 4:42 pm

    I have been asked why at that time no mention was made of the Liberals.

    The fact is the local Liberals had joined with the Conservatives to form what was known as the Conservative Liberal and Unionist Association.

    It was not until after the Orpington by-election in 1962 when the Liberal Eric Lubbock beat the Tory Peter Coldman that some of the Guildford Liberals broke away from the association.

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