Wadebridge mum and health professional Karen McHugh has been selected as the Liberal Democrat candidate for the upcoming Cornwall Council by-election to the division of Wadebridge West.
Karen, known to many local residents by her maiden surname, Williams, was educated at Wadebridge Comprehensive School and then Truro College. Like so many young people, she had to leave Cornwall to pursue her education and chosen career as a diagnostic radiographer. After twelve years away, Karen returned home to Wadebridge with her family in 2011, and now works at Treliske.
Karen was selected by a ballot of Lib Dem members in the Wadebridge West electoral division on Monday 7th March 2016, with an overall turnout of 65%.
Speaking of her selection, Karen McHugh said: “I am delighted and honoured to have been selected to represent Wadebridge. Looking ahead, I hope to campaign to fairly represent both the families I grew up with and new faces alike, and, if successful, to be an insightful Cornwall Councillor, with a new set of eyes and a fresh approach.”
Chairman of North Cornwall Liberal Democrats, John Lamb, added: “I have no doubt that Karen McHugh would be an excellent Cornwall Councillor for Wadebridge West. Given the circumstances of this by-election, this is a unique opportunity for the people of Wadebridge to send a message to the Conservative government.
“The Conservatives have a terrible track record both nationally and in Cornwall. In recent years they tried to introduce ‘Regional Pay’ that would have seen nurses and teachers in Cornwall paid less than their counterparts in other parts of the country. They voted to cut the tax credits of local, hard-working families in Wadebridge. More recently, Conservative MPs voted for the sell-off of social housing, which will make it harder for local people to stay in Wadebridge.
“It’s abundantly clear that the last thing that Wadebridge needs is more Conservative influence.”
Speaking after Karen was selected, Stephen Knightley, Liberal Democrat Cornwall Councillor for the neighbouring electoral division of Wadebridge East, said: “I've known Karen for a long time. She is determined, caring and puts her heart into everything she does. I’ve worked with Karen’s mum when she served local residents on the parish council and on the board of Governors of St Minver School, and hope to work with Karen on Cornwall Council to provide a strong team for Wadebridge.”
Jeremy Rowe, the Lib Dem Councillor for the neighbouring division of St Issey and St Tudy, added “I’ve known Karen for many years and know there’s no-one better to fight for Wadebridge.”
Former MP, Dan Rogerson, said: “Here in North Cornwall, the contest is between the Liberal Democrats and the Conservatives. By voting for Lib Dem Karen McHugh, local people will not only be electing an excellent Cornwall Councillor but also sending a clear message to the Conservative government. But voting for anyone except Karen will only help the Conservatives to win here.”
The Wadebridge West by-election will take place on Thursday 14th April.
The North Cornwall Liberal Democrats have thanked local residents after they stormed to victory in the Launceston Central by elections.
Gemma Massey was elected as Launceston’s Central new Cornwall Councillor. Paula Bullen and Kirk Denton were elected to Launceston’s Town Council.
Gemma said: “It’s a huge honour to be elected and I wish to thank the residents of Launceston. If you have a problem that I can help with, please do not hesitate to contact me on 07832 119958 or email me on email@example.com
Help continue the fightback - join today!
The stunning victory in Launceston is just the latest stage of the Lib Dem fightback in North Cornwall.
Since the General Election, over 20,000 people have joined the Liberal Democrats with over a 100 new members locally.
Many people who have joined have never been a member of a political party before but want to stand together against what the Conservatives are doing to the country.
If you believe that this country needs a liberal voice then join the party today by going www.libdems.org.uk/join
Liberal Democrats triumphant in Launceston Central by-elections
The North Cornwall Liberal Democrats are celebrating after storming to victory in both the Launceston Central Cornwall Council and Town Council by-elections that took place on January 14th.
Gemma Massey was elected to Cornwall Council with 63% of the vote.
Gemma said: “I would like to thank the people of Launceston Central for electing me as their new Cornwall Councillor. I have always loved Launceston, so it's an absolute honour to have been chosen to represent it on Cornwall Council.”
Paula Bullen and Kirk Denton were elected to Launceston Town Council with 552 and 547 votes respectively.
Chairman of the North Cornwall Liberal Democrats, John Lamb said: “Congratulations to Gemma, Paula and Kirk, as well as the rest of the Liberal Democrat team that made this result possible.
“This fantastic result goes far to dispel the myth that the Liberal Democrats are somehow a spent force. Far from it. Since May last year, the membership of the Liberal Democrats has grown by over 20,000, and the party has enjoyed by-election success after by-election success.
“Since the General Election, it's clear what a majority Conservative government looks like. It means an unbridled assault on the most vulnerable, a commitment to austerity driven by dogma rather than sound economics and, most disgustingly of all, a callous attitude to those around the world that are fleeing danger and persecution. With Labour seemingly more concerned with opposing itself rather than the Tories, it is only the Liberal Democrats who are focused on challenging the government and what it is doing to the country.
“Whether in Launceston or elsewhere, I would urge anyone that believes that this country needs an effective, liberal voice to stand up against the Conservatives to join the Liberal Democrats today.”
The full results were as follows:
Launceston Central (Cornwall Council)
Gemma Massey (Liberal Democrats) 63.09%, 515 - ELECTED
Val Bugden-Cawsley (Conservative) 27.6%, 226
Roger Michael Creagh-Osborne (Green) 7.9%, 65
William Allman (Christian Peoples Alliance) 1.5%, 12
Launceston Central Town Council (elections for three town council vacancies)
Paula Bullen (Liberal Democrats) – 552 – ELECTED
Kirk Denton (Liberal Democrats) – 547 - ELECTED
Val Bugden-Cawsley (Conservative) – 344 - ELECTED
William Allman (Christian People's Alliance) – 102
Launceston businesswomen, Gemma Massey, has been selected as Liberal Democrat candidate for the upcoming Cornwall Council by-election to the division of Launceston Central.
Gemma, aged 31, is member of Launceston's Chamber of Commerce and lives on Race Hill in Launceston with her husband and young daughter. She runs her own business organising networking and training for local businesses. Gemma is committed to the town and helps to run the successful 'Love Launceston' loyalty card scheme.
She was selected by an approval and selection panel of the North Cornwall Liberal Democrats on Monday 30th November.
Speaking of her selection, she said: “I'm thrilled to have been selected as the Lib Dem candidate for Launceston Central. Local Lib Dem councillors like Adam Paynter and Jade Farrington have an excellent track record of standing up for the town. Like them, I wish to fight for Launceston.”
Chairman of the Liberal Democrats Barry Bryne added: “If elected, Gemma will be an excellent Cornwall Councillor for Launceston Central.”
Barry also warned against the dangers of greater Conservative influence in the town:
“The Conservatives have a terrible track record in Launceston. From delaying the expansion of the local Health Centre and closing the police station's front desk and custody centre, to voting to cut the tax credits of local, hard-working families in Launceston, the last thing the town needs is more Conservative influence.”
Cornwall Councillor for Launceston South, Jade Farrington said: “I'm backing Gemma Massey to win for Launceston Central. I've seen how hard working she is and the excellent work she's done in the local business community. She'd be a fantastic new councillor to help Launceston to stand up against the damage the Conservatives are doing here.”
Adam Paynter, Cornwall Councillor of Launceston North added: “I've known Gemma for a long time. She is determined, caring and puts her heart into everything she does. She would make an excellent councillor.”
Former MP, Dan Rogerson said: “Gemma is intelligent, driven and principled. If she is successful, I know she will stand up for Launceston Central and be the liberal voice the town needs.”
The Launceston Central Cornwall Council by-election will take place on January 14th when voters will also have the opportunity to elect three town councillors.
Tax credit changes will hammer families in North Cornwall says Dan Rogerson
5400 families in North Cornwall will lose out under Conservative plans to cut tax credits.
Figures produced by the House of Commons Library show over three million low-income working families currently in receipt of tax credits will see their entitlement reduced, as part of the Government’s proposals.
The change will mean a total loss of £5,250,000 to families in North Cornwall, with the average family losing £750 a year.
Despite claims from the Conservatives that those affected will benefit from plans to increase the minimum wage, the independent Institute for Fiscal Studies has said Tory figures don’t stack up.
IFS analysis shows a £750 average loss will only be offset by £200 as a result of the new minimum wage.
Liberal Democrats have opposed the move and said it undermines the work of the Coalition Government, to make sure it always pays more to be in work than on benefits.
Former North Cornwall MP and Liberal Democrat Parliamentary Spokesperson Dan Rogerson said:
“This is a slap in the face for families in Cornwall, and money taken out of the Cornish economy. Their inheritance tax changes will keep money in the South East.
“What makes this even worse is that 8400 children in our area will now be forced to live in poorer households, reducing their life chances and making it harder for their parents to make ends meet.
“Study after study have shown that the Conservative’s claim to be supporting low income families through a minimum wage increase nowhere near make up for these cuts. It’s time for them to come clean and be honest with those doing the right thing and going out to work.
“I am pleased that Lib Dems are opposing this measure. We worked hard in Coalition to ensure that work would always pay more than choosing to remain on benefits. It is a disgrace the Conservatives are now undermining this good work.”
Local Liberal Democrats have raised concerns that postal services in rural Cornwall could be damaged by the Conservatives’ decision to sell off the Government’s 30% stake in Royal Mail.
Liberal Democrat councillors and former MP Dan Rogerson have welcomed details of a new scheme to improve broadband across the Duchy but have said that the investment must benefit rural communities in North Cornwall.
In a letter to voters ahead of the election on Thursday, fifteen Cornwall Councillors representing communities across North Cornwall, from St Merryn to Morwenstow, have given their backing to Dan Rogerson to be re-elected as local MP:
Dan Rogerson is a strong voice that North Cornwall cannot afford to lose, write former local Liberal MPs Paul Tyler and John Pardoe.
Left to right: John Pardoe, Dan Rogerson and Lord Paul Tyler