FOLLOWING Francis Richens’ resignation from Bude-Stratton Town Council in April, four candidates will be standing in a by-election for the Flexbury and Poughill ward to be held on June 27, writes Christine Williams.

For all four of them climate change, the environment and improving local health services, in particular restoring and upgrading overnight services in Stratton Hospital’s MIU, are high priorities.

Lorraine Corrigan-Turner, who will stand as an Independent, is calling for ambulance response times to be dramatically improved.

For working parents, better after-school child care and during school holidays is important to her. She would also like Bude Police Station to be fully functional so that residents feel safer. She wishes to educate residents and visitors on the right environmental choices.

Steven Haynes, who represents the Labour Party, will work to make Bude special and support local projects that improve people’s lives. He wants the town council to prioritise local contractors for their projects and will push for the re-opening and refurbishment of Bude Foyer for vulnerable young people.

He aims to combat pollution from sewerage and plastics in the sea and will re-introduce weekly councillor surgeries in Flexbury and Poughill.

As a member of the Green Party, Philippa Purchase sets out an ambitious and detailed programme for all the council’s activities to be carbon neutral by 2030 and to encourage biodiversity.

She says that the environmental impact of all planning applications must be considered and hedgerows and existing green spaces preserved. People should be encouraged to walk and cycle and the council should review support for public transport, including re-starting a train service to North Cornwall.

Robert Uhlig, the Liberal Democrat candidate, is concerned about unnecessary development and traffic chaos and wants decent homes with affordable rents for local people and key workers.

He will work to get value for money services in order to curb council tax rises and make the town vibrant through the creation and retention of employment, leisure facilities and public events. With funding per student £264 below the rest of England he will stand up for Cornish schools.

Mayor Bob Willingham is pleased that as many as four candidates are standing and although some are representing national political parties he stresses it is the best interests of the town that matter.

Voting will take place between 7am and 10pm in the Ivor Potter Hall at the Parkhouse Centre and in Poughill Village Hall.

It has been decided not to send out polling cards but postal voting will be available to those who applied by June 14.