Posted: 04.05.21 at 14:47 by The Editor
Five candidates will contest the vacant seat on Kenilworth Town Council this Thursday (May 6).
The St John's Ward at KTC has been vacant since the resignation of Jack Worrall in February.
The election will take place on May 6, alongside Warwickshire County Council and Warwickshire Police and Crime Commissioner elections.
Contesting the St John's Ward:
Alison Insley - Liberal Democrat
Jane Green - Labour
Richard Spencer - Conservative
Wayne Harris - Social Democratic
Wendy Edwards - Green
On-call firefighter Alison Insley has been a Kenilworth resident for more than 30 years. She has recently taken early retirement from her job at Warwickshire County Council Library and Information Service taking up the role at Kenilworth Fire Station.
In her spare time she is a keen squash player and coach, and also a cyclist, volunteering as a ride leader for British Cycling and cycling to work.
Ms Insley said: “I am very fortunate to live in this beautiful town of Kenilworth and I would like to contribute in making it the best place in which to live, work and study and to visit.
"Kenilworth has a lot to offer and it would be my privilege, if elected as town councillor, to have the opportunity in supporting the community in making the most of the space, amenities and services.”
Jane Green will represent the Labour Party for Kenilworth St John's Ward at both town and county council elections this week.
Ms Green, who has always lived in and around Kenilworth her whole life has said she wants to try to stop the proposed developments for Abbey Fields leisure centre which will "ruin the semi-rural character of our beautiful Abbey Fields" she says.
"I am the only candidate campaigning to keep our historic public outdoor pool in Abbey Fields and for it to be developed as a community-run wellbeing hub. The mental, physical and community benefits of outdoor swimming are well known but the district council is pressing ahead with its plans for a £10 million city-type indoor pool complex which will ruin the semi-rural character of our beautiful Abbey Fields.
"The council’s plans to hugely increase the number of people using Kenilworth’s twin leisure facility sites at Abbey Fields and Castle Farm will create serious traffic and parking problems in the vicinity of High Street and St John’s already busy residential roads in the Fishponds Road area. This is a decision which must be stopped."
Raised in Kenilworth, Richard Spencer has lived in the town for the majority of his life, aside from his studies at the University of Stirling as a mature student in the 1990’s, and a brief relocation to reside in New Zealand.
Mr Spencer said: "I used to support the Liberals who lay claim to so much, but I have come to realise that they love to lay claim to achievements and ‘talk’ about what they think is important for you, the electorate. But we all know, things don’t simply happen by themselves, it takes passion, enthusiasm, a rational thought process as well as drive and honestly to achieve the things this town needs and we all value.
"It’s easy to say '20 is plenty' but it was the Conservatives who applied this in Leyes Lane as well as Warwick Road. It is also the Conservatives whom have provided funding for the proposed traffic calming in Warwick Road and Albion Street."
But he added: "I’ll back the results of the consultation, if residents don’t want it, we don’t have to have it.
"The reality is that blue is the new green. We don’t just talk of maintaining the urban canopy, it’s the Conservatives who initiated the planting of nearly 200 trees not only in St Johns but across the whole town and I intend to continue that work."
Green candidate Wendy Edwards has lived in Kenilworth for over 30 years, spending her working life as a science teacher in further education in Coventry.
She is also a candidate for St John's Ward in the Warwickshire County Council elections this Thursday.
Speaking on why she loves Kenilworth Ms Edwards said: “I love that I am able to walk 15 minutes from home in one direction and be in the countryside or walk 15 minutes in another and be in the town.”
As well as discussing local transport issues, she also highlighted the need to focus on problems facing local young people.
“As an ex-teacher, I am very concerned about education and engagement of young people. We need to make sure that the new school is built to high environmental standards and provides education fit for a rapidly changing world.”
Mr Harris, an independent candidate, was approached for comment by Kenilworth Nub News, but has not provided one.
However the results of this by-election are not due to be published until the following Monday (May 10) due to logistical reasons.
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