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  • Article: Apr 24, 2019
    By Ashford Lib Dems

    Victoria is a 2 Councillors ward
    Sadly, we only have one Lib Dem candidate for this two candidate ward. We would like this to be different next time. If you would like to be considered, or know of someone else that would be interested, please do get in touch.
    Charlotte Mhali
    Charlotte's childhood home was in Benenden in the Weald of Kent and she did her first degree at St. Hugh's, Oxford. Whilst there, she was a co-founder of Oxford Simon House, which led to a five year involvement in work for homeless single people, both in Oxford and nationally for the Cyrenians.
    After meeting her South African future husband (Zoiile Mbali) at University she volunteered for the Anti-Apartheid Movement, and specifically the Luthuli Foundation, the education wing, as by that time she was doing her teacher-training course at London University and running a weekly bookstall on development. From 1973 to 1981 she did teaching jobs in Botswana, whilst raising a young family of 3 daughters.
    Returning to UK in 1981, the family lived in Tees-side, West Midlands, and then East Midlands. Throughout those years, Charlotte multi-tasked between parenting, being a clergy wife, doing a Ph.D, and various part-time jobs teaching English (EFL or ESL to immigrants, Open University tutor, lecturing at Univ of Leicester) and volunteering for the WDM, the political lobbying organisation on world development (being its national chairperson for 3 years). Returning to South Africa in 1993, Charlotte worked full-time for the University of Natal (KZN) until 2008.
    For South Africa's first democratic elections in 1994, the Mbalis were volunteers for the ANC and Charlotte was a ward agent for Durban central in the 1996 local KZN elections, though later dropping ANC membership as corruption started to bite. From 2009 to 2017, Charlotte started and maintained Lifelong Learning KZN, a non-profit organisation for educational events for adults in Durban. Returning to Kent in 2017, the Mbalis spent 2018 renovating a suburban house, choosing to reside in Ashford because it is en route between Hackney and Brussels (where daughters and grandchildren live). Charlotte quickly made connections with anti-Brexit volunteers (mostly Lib Dems) and, with Adrian, started organising Ashford for Europe and from that, progressed to standing for the Lib Dems in Victoria Ward.

  • Article: Apr 24, 2019
    By Ashford Lib Dems

    Ashford Borough Council Elections May 2nd 2019

    People become Liberal Democrats when they say to themselves, "someone must do something," when they look to the left and the right of politics and don't like what they see. Being a Liberal Democrat tends to mean you are centralist by your very nature.
    On each membership card, it says:
    "The Liberal Democrats exist to build and safeguard a fair, free and open society, in which we seek to balance the fundamental values of liberty, equality and community and in which no-one shall be enslaved by poverty, ignorance or conformity."
    For Ashford that means:
    • Invest in the environment and streetscape of Ashford.
    o Rather than expensive statues or art installations, Ashford needs effective cleaning and maintenance of public spaces. Paving needs to be replaced, rather than holes filled with ugly tarmac. Signs or railings which have been damaged need to be repaired immediately not left for months or years.
    o Encourage Ashford in Bloom competitions for front gardens.

  • Article: Apr 24, 2019
    By Ashford Lib Dems

    Theresa Dickens
    Originally a Londoner, I have lived in Kent for the majority of my life and brought up my family here. I was a teacher and Head of English in Kent state schools, and passionately believe in the importance of our public services as the backbone of our country.
    For many years I have been active in the trade union movement. I believe in fairness, opportunity, and the importance of people being represented, particularly during challenging times.
    This is the first time I have put myself forward in an election. I am standing for the Liberal Democrats in Park Farm North because I am concerned about the rate of building development. The Council have been building houses at pace, without increasing resources in local schools, GP surgeries and other public services.
    I would like to represent local people because I think it's time for change.

  • Article: Apr 24, 2019
    By Ashford Lib Dems

    Chris Grayling
    I'm standing for the Lib Dems for the Park Farm South Ward. I believe in the party's commitment to an open, liberal and democratic society where all are valued, and government, both local and national, should be responsive to the needs and aspirations of the electorate.
    I've lived in the Ashford area for over ten years and while I'm a fan of the fast pace of development here, I have also become increasingly concerned with the mismatch between it and the provision of local amenities such as schools and medical services. Development without caring about the consequences is asking for trouble. If I'm elected, I'll work hard to defend the interests of all the constituents of Park Farm South.
    I was a teacher for over twenty-five years before retiring. Now I write, tutor maths and get under my wife's feet. Incidentally, my other half, Theresa Dickens is standing in the Park Farm North Ward. I'm on Twitter (@chrisgrayling) if you want to find out more about me.

  • Article: Apr 23, 2019
    By Ashford Lib Dems

    Sadly, we only have one Lib Dem candidate for this two candidate ward. We would like this to be different next time. If you would like to be considered, or know of someone else that would be interested, please do get in touch.
    Andrew Graham
    As a resident of the borough of Ashford I care about the town, its surrounding area and how it can cater to the needs of all who live here.
    The Ashford Borough Council employs some fantastic people who do a great job for our community and I would like to see the councillors elected to the council help these people achieve more and create a better community for us all. I would like to ensure that there is some diversity of thought going into the council and when it works on a project that it is focused only on delivery but also on a successful outcome providing benefits to the community.
    The town is changing, some new businesses are coming in which is great news. However, strategies are needed that will support both new ventures and existing business. The future of retail and business is changing, which will affect employment, and the borough cannot be left behind. It is the people of the borough who make it what it is, and the council's role should be to provide support in areas such as healthcare, housing, security and transport.
    I have an extensive background in both the corporate and charitable sectors as a product manager and I am accustomed to listening to what people need, delivering projects, understanding how to improve them and tracking success. If elected, these are skills which I would like to offer to the community.

  • Fight climate change with solar panels
    Article: Apr 23, 2019
    By Sir Ed Davey

    Our reliance on fossil fuels puts our children in danger and gives power to despots across the globe. Ed Davey outlines an emergency plan to beat the climate crisis.

    Whether it's young people taking time off school or the Commons' naked protestors: they are right. We face a climate crisis.

    Liberal Democrats should provide the emergency plan. In 3 parts.

  • Article: Apr 22, 2019
    By Ashford Lib Dems

    Sadly, we do not have a Lib Dem candidate for this ward. We would like this to be different next time. If you would like to be considered, or know of someone else that would be interested, please do get in touch.

  • Article: Apr 20, 2019

    Five reasons to vote for the Liberal Democrats in the European elections on 23rd May.

    1. To vote against Brexit

    The Liberal Democrats are the only nation-wide party to have been fighting Brexit since the very beginning.

    We've spent three years campaigning for a People's Vote with an option to remain in the EU.

  • Article: Apr 19, 2019

    I suspect that many people outside the church think that Christmas is the most important date in the Christian calendar. It isn't Christmas, but Easter. While at Christmas we celebrate Jesus, the son of God coming to earth, taking on human form and living like we do. At Easter, we remember he died for us and was brought back to life.

  • gif of printer printing our Euro addressed mailings
    Article: Apr 19, 2019
    By Shaun Roberts

    Our printers are working through the night to create mailings to 2.8 million people across the UK - telling them why they need to vote Liberal Democrat in the European elections.

    We're off to a flying start thanks to your generous donations.

    THANK YOU.

    In both the local and European elections, we have a real story to tell. Your support enables us to tell our story to millions online and offline.

    Our campaigning up and down the country is delivering more Lib Dem voters in the local elections and more votes to stop Brexit.

    But as the EU election has been called so suddenly, it means we don't know if we can raise the funds to keep campaigning at this high level.

    The Liberal Democrats are the ONLY pro-Remain party with the capacity to deliver a European election campaign on such short notice - here's what the papers are saying: