Adur, West & East Worthing Party including East Arun

Worthing Liberal Democrats Weekly Newsletter – 29th April to 5th May 2012

Articles for the past week:

Leader:  Plus one

News this past week:

1. St Pauls War Memorial Rededication

2. Cheap Civic Centre Car Park Only Half Used

3. Pool – “Signed, Sealed & Delivered”

4. UKIP “Wins” Gaisford

5. Worthing Lib Dem Gain

6. Baby Boom Affects School Intake

7. Youth Council Shows Promise


Lib Dems will keep Worthing’s services local

Lib Dems will get on with bringing our town into the 21st century – no more dither and delay

Lib Dems will ensure ‘We are all in it together’ – no more waste and high pay

Lib Dems are the only opposition in Worthing – Labour can’t win here

Lib Dems support 20 mph in Worthing’s residential roads

Leader:  Plus one 

Worthing Liberal Democrats gained one seat in Thursday’s Worthing Borough elections as Keith Sunderland reclaimed his rightful place on the council by defeating the defending Tory in Northbrook.  Lib Dem Michael Donin successfully retained his Durrington seat against a strong challenge from the Tory candidate. Indeed Worthing Liberal Democrats did not lose a single seat unlike the Tories.

We were disappointed that wasted Labour votes were responsible for Tories retaining Broadwater, Gaisford and Selden where we had high hopes of gains and further eating into the Tory majority on the council. There is no way the result was a resounding endorsement of local Tory policies but a protest vote based on national issues.  Worthing Liberal Democrats will continue to fight on local issues in all wards without stint for the next two years, unlike Labour or UKIP who only appear at election times.  We are not fair weather candidates unlike Tories who will also disappear between now and 2014.  Where Tories have won so many will be hard to find working in their wards until they reappear at election time in 2016.  It will be interesting to see after three months how many residents can actually name their local Tory ward councillors.

For the second year Worthing Liberal Democrats have bucked the national trend.  Nationally Liberal Democrats lost a total of 336 seats from a contested 767 seats – Worthing Liberal Democrats gained one. The national Lib Dem share of the vote was 16% – a lot better than recent doom and gloom polls suggested but in Worthing the Lib Dem share of the vote was a more healthy 25%.

Unfurtunately the real winner was apathy with the turnout figure in Worthing calculated to be just 28% – 72 people in every 100 failing to express their views on local issues. Those brave people who in our past fought for our right to vote must be turning in their graves.

Full Worthing results as follows:

Broadwater:   James Nelson       Lib Dem 513;  Con 585;  Lab 371;  UKIP 296                         Con hold

Castle:            David Potter         Lib Dem 701;  Con 505;  Lab 262;  UKIP 270                          Lib Dem hold

Central:          Laura Scott           Lib Dem 327;  Con 494;  Lab 404;  UKIP 218;  Green 196      Con hold 

Durrington:    Michael Donin       Lib Dem 508;  Con 492;  Lab 183;  UKIP 218                          Lib Dem hold

Gaisford:        Emma Davies        Lib Dem 577;  Con 671;  Lab 329;  UKIP 254                         Con hold

Goring:          Michael Finch        Lib Dem 170;  Con1200; Lab 359;  UKIP 482;  Green 178      Con hold

Heene:           Shan Orr-Ewing     Lib Dem 425;  Con 685;                 UKIP 331                         Con hold

Marine:          Yvonne Leonard    Lib Dem 260;  Con 959;  Lab 357;  UKIP 349                         Con hold

Northbrook:    Keith Sunderland  Lib Dem 298;  Con 294;  Lab  86;                    Green  63      Lib Dem GAIN

Offington:       Linda Williams      Lib Dem 305;  Con1107; Lab 290;  UKIP 599                         Con hold

Trudi Starling        Lib Dem 256;  Con 959                                                         Con hold

Salvington:    Neil Campbell       Lib Dem  257; Con 884;  Lab 297;  UKIP 456                         Con hold

Selden:          Jackie Cranefield  Lib Dem  498; Con 605;  Lab 429;  UKIP 267                         Con hold

Tarring:          Norah Fisher         Lib Dem 763;  Con 448;  Lab 269;  UKIP 267    Lib Dem hold

Worthng Liberal Democrats 



Sunday 29th April – Worthing Liberal Democrat Cllr David Chapman today saw his wish come true as many gathered for the rededication of the St Pauls War Memorial in Chapel Street. David has actively raised money and campaigned for the restoration of the memorial which had fallen into disrepair. The memorial was erected to honour the dead from the church and the parish who served in the 1914-18 war. The campaign to restore followed a letter from a concerned Rustington resident sent to Mayor Ann Sayers, when in office, saying “what a state it is in – full of mould and the stone has turned green. In short, it is a disgrace but can easily be righted.” David took action and raised enough funds to restore the memorial and today’s rededication was a celebration of the successful work.  Today’s service was lead by David Farrant, the Padre of the Combined Ex-Services Association and David Chapamn was proud to welcome both Worthing Mayor Ann Barlow and Freddy Dablemont, the Vice President of the French Richebourg Town Council. A video of the rededication and celebration can be seen at

David said: “I would like to thank all those who supported the event. The event went well and was well attended.   We were very lucky with the weather in that there was a window of dry weather and we only suffered a squally shower towards the end of the service. It was opportune also to include a mark of respect to the memory of Michael Rowland, a 22 year old Guardsman who died in Afghanistan on Friday – and to show that these monuments stand as a testament to the continued sacrifice made by our troops to protect our security, freedom and quality of life.”


Thursday 3rd May – In today’s Worthing Herald Worthing Town Centre Initiative Manager Sharon Clarke, when referring to part of the Civic Centre car park being sold for flats, is quoted as saying “We currently run at 50 per cent capacity on weekends so we can afford to lose part. Anything the council can do to make money is a good thing.”  Worthing Liberal Democrats understood the reason the Worthing Town Centre Initiative took over the running of the car park on Saturdays was to offer cheap parking to encourage shoppers to come to Worthing.

Worthing Lib Dem Group Leader Alan Rice said:  “Now I am really confused.  I hear so often that it is Worthing’s high car parking charges which deters shoppers from coming to Worthing and was the reason the Worthing Town Centre initiative offered 50p per hour parking on Saturdays at the Civic Centre car park. So why is it only half used and can so be so readily given up for flats?

Yet again an asset belonging to the community is to be sold off to help finance our expensive small new pool – apparently with the Town Centre Initiative’s backing.  How much more family silver will we sacrifice on this white elephant?”


Thursday 3rd May – Over one year later than promised by the Tories, Worthing Liberal Democrats today received confirmation from Worthing Borough Council the construction contract with Morgan Sindall for the new pool was “signed, sealed and delivered” last week. Worthing Lib Dems couldn’t resist checking on the Morgan Sindall website but surprise, surprise it is still not mentioned today. We wait with baited breath.


Friday 4th May – There was a shell-shocked silence at today’s count for the Worthing Borough Council elections when the Returning Officer announced a win for UKIP in Gaisford ward. Those at the count realised an error had occured but not before the result had gone out on Twitter to the Worthing Herald.  Under Electoral Commission rules the Returning Officer’s announcement stands unless the “winning” candidate concedes defeat or the result is confirmed in a court of law.  The UKIP candidate concerned, John Harwood, was not at the count and had to be contacted by telephone. Mr Harwood graciously conceded defeat. Ironically in Adur UKIP came close to taking Churchill ward from the Tories – losing by just one vote.


Friday 4th May – In yesterday’s Worthing Borough Council elections Worthing Liberal Democrats again bucked the national trend by Keith Sunderland gaining Northbrook from the Tories – a net gain of one seat. Worthing Liberal Democrats successfully held all three seats they were defending in Tarring, Castle and Durrington with Michael Donin holding on by a nail-biting four votes.

Worthing Lib Dem Group Leader Alan Rice said:  “This result is not a ringing endorsement for the Tory administration’s policies but a national protest vote. We are delighted to welcome Keith back onto the council where he will put in the hard work we expect of Lib Dem members.  Naturally we are disappointed by not achieving more gains but have suffered from a Labour surge of wasted votes.  Wasted in the sense we are stuck for another two years of a ‘high tax – no spend do nothing’ right-wing Tory council.”


Friday 4th May – The current “baby boom” will mean that 6,000 more reception places will be needed in West Sussex schools in the year 2015.  In Worthing there will be a 12 percent increase and Worthing Lib Dem County Councillors are working with West Sussex and Worthing schools to find the best solution.  We will keep parents, and others interested, informed of developments as and when we can.


Saturday 5th May – Worthing Borough Lib Dem Group Leader Alan Rice accompanied Conservative Cabinet Member Tom Wye to an induction weekend with Worthing Youth Council at Lodge Hill, Pulborough today. The two Borough council members shared with the group of 18 young people what it means to be a councillor and took part in a “Dragons Den” where the councillors pitched a proposal for taking up by the council.  The Youth Council then voted on the best proposal – their questions, comments and enthusiasm showed promise for the future of Worthing.

Alan said:  “With so much apathy shown at Thursday’s elections it was so refreshing to see the enthusiasm of these 18 young people.  Tom and I are determined this enthusiasm will not go wasted and will be put to good use.  To that end we will encourage greater liaison between elected Borough members and the Youth Council.  Modesty prevents me from sayimg which proposal won most votes.”


Wednesday 10th May – Lib Dem Northbrook/Durrington Ward Surgery – The Durrington Community Centre, New Road 7.30 to 8.30 pm

Saturday 12th May – Lib Dem Castle Ward Surgery – The Strand Shops 10.00 to 10.30 am

Saturday 12th May – Lib Dem Gaisford/Tarring Castle Wards Surgery – West Worthing Baptist Church, South Street, Tarring 10.30 to noon


Thursday 17th May – WSCC West Sussex Joint Commissioning Board – County Hall, Chichester at 2.15 pm

Friday 18th May – WSCC Full County Council (meeting will be webcast) – County Hall, Chichester at 10.30 am

Friday 18th May – WBC Annual Council Meeting – Council Chamber, Town Hall at noon

Tuesday 22nd May – Lib Dem Durrington Surgery – New Life Church, Durrington 7.00 to 8.00 pm

and every third Tuesday of the month

Thursday 24th May – WSCC Health and Adult Social Care Select Committee – County Hall, Chichester at 10.30 am

Tuesday 29th May – WSCC Planning Committee – County Hall, Chichester at 10.30 am

Tuesday 29th May – WBC Planning Committee – Gordon Room, Town Hall at 6.00 pm

Thursday 31st May – WSCC Policy and Resources Select Committee – County Hall, Chichester at 10.30 am

Saturday 2nd June – Lib Dem Central Ward Surgery – Sidney Walter Centre, Sussex Road 10.30 am to 12.00 noon

and every first Saturday of the month

Saturday 2nd June – Lib Dem Broadwater Surgery – The Community House, Dominion Road 2.00 to 4.00 pm

and every first Saturday of the month

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