A NEW independent group is hoping to shake up the city's political scene at next month's town and parish council elections.

Understanding Salisbury is standing eight candidates across the city, and the group says that "traditional party politics and infighting at the Guildhall have let the city down".

They say that putting Salisbury first "will be at the heart of everything they do", as well as "listening to local people and standing up for them when Wiltshire Council needs to be challenged".

The group has already received support from former MP for Salisbury Robert Key.

Mr Key told the Journal that he wants “local democracy to be stood on its head”, as “politics has gone wrong for us at local government level”.

'It is time for a change'

The independents met through the SOS – Save Our Salisbury Facebook page, and are keen to make sure that any future changes to the city have "the support of the whole community".

Annie Riddle said: “Whatever party you support nationally, can you honestly say that local government is making a great job of things in our city?

“It is time for a change, to a council that truly represents local people like us, finds common sense solutions to local issues, and focuses on helping Salisbury bounce back to prosperity.

“We realise that some people will still want to show their loyalty to one of the traditional parties."

Annie Riddle

Annie Riddle

'Give independent local people a chance'

Annie added: “But you get three votes for the city council, and the major parties aren’t fielding a full slate of candidates. So please don’t waste your ‘spare’ second and third votes.

"Use them to give independent local people a chance to bring common sense and balance to the council, and we will do our best to repay your trust.”

The Understanding Salisbury candidates are:

  • Harnham West: Annie Riddle and Mary Goldsmith
  • Harnham East: Polly Small
  • St Francis and Stratford: Sarah Champion and Richard Gillard
  • St Edmunds: Peter Riley
  • Fisherton and Lower Bemerton: Frogg Moody and Ruby Vittorino Moody

Unitary, town and parish, and police and crime commissioner elections all take place on Thursday, May 6.

For more information on the Understanding Salisbury candidates, click here.

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