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Nicole Hawkins

Nicole made Minehead, West Somerset her home in 2006, and married her local husband. Family, community, animal welfare and Somerset countryside are very important to her.

Nicole was elected to district council in June 2018 during a local by-election for the Alcombe ward. She knows her ward and residents very well, and meets many of them on a daily basis through her work at Engage, a local charity, where she has been managing the furniture reuse project for many years.

Nicole has years of experience in the private sector and of running her own business, but finds working in the voluntary sector far more rewarding. She promises to work hard for her ward, demand the 25% target of affordable housing with proper infrastructure, tackle crime and antisocial behaviour, and protect the environment for future generations. She will work for a more open council that works with cross parties and consult people.


Blackbrook & Holway


Hazel Prior-sankey

Hazel lives in the centre of Blackbrook and Holway, and is married to Adrian with 3 grown up children and 10 grandchildren. Hazel has been a local councillor for more than 25 years and devotes her time to working in the community.

Hazel is pleased that over that time several pedestrian crossings have been installed as well as many cycleways across the south and east of Taunton. She has also fought a campaign to stop the Blackbrook loop and is very concerned about proposals to destroy Hawthorn Park with a motorway junction. The alternative behind Killams Green is also unsatisfactory.

Hazel also started the campaign to stop Holway Green being developed with a mass of tiny flats. She has a very good track record of helping local people with a host of individual issues!

Francesca Smith

Fran has been involved with and a supporter of the Lib Dems for many years, together with being a district councillor since 2003. 

She was born in Taunton and educated at Priorswood Secondary Modern and SCAT. She is married to Peter and they have 3 daughters, one of which, Federica, is also a councillor!

Fran regularly campaigns for local people to have access to good housing and jobs, and has also worked on other local issues such as the pedestrianisation of the town centre and economic development in the town. She opposed the sell off of the council housing stock as well as the proposed merger with West Somerset District Council.

Fran’s dedication to her role and the area is made clear through her words:

''I believe in fairness, equality, and transparency, and undertake to follow those ideals in my role as a councillor. As one of the Blackbrook and Holway ward councillors I am keen to help the local people I represent.''


Comeytrowe & Bishop’s Hull


Simon Nicholls

Simon lives in Comeytrowe with his wife and children. Having spent over 30 years as a full time Fire Officer, he understands the values of integrity, compassion, and straight honest talking.

A "sense of community" has always been important to him, which he believes he has displayed in his role as Parish & District councillor.

He is eager to speak up for those who are vulnerable, support residents with problems, and campaign for improvements to Taunton. . . OUR county town! Only through a spirit of cooperation can we effect positive change, he says, and this is increasingly important as our planet requires significant behavioural change from us all.

habib farbahi

Habib started his secondary education in SCAT here in Taunton, enabling him to achieve a Master’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from Aston University in Birmingham. After university, he set up a number of businesses from commercial outlets to construction, but he views the most varied part of his work as representing his area on the council.

He was elected as a councillor in 2007 and has since advocated tirelessly for his ward to the council. He has held the shadow portfolio for economic development for the last two years, and also set up the ‘Taunton Forward’ initiative in order to get private sector expertise into public sector mentality. He was pivotal in ensuring that some of our services, such as the Direct Labour Organisation (DLO) were not outsourced.

Recently, together with fellow Lib Dem councillors, Habib fought hard for the people of Comeytrowe and Bishop’s Hull to ensure that, when it comes to large housing developments, a comprehensive ‘Master plan’ should lead the development when looking at traffic impact, school provisions, and flooding.

Habib is devoted to promoting a secure future, better outcomes for all, and having a safe home for our children. He wants to give a helping hand to others less fortunate than him, and do all he can for the residents of Comeytrowe and Bishop’s Hull.

Bev fernandes

Bev has lived in Bishop’s Hull for nearly 8 years, before that she lived in Yeovil and different areas of the country accompanying her husband as he served in the Royal Navy.

She has a grown-up son and currently divides her time between teaching Tai Chi and invigilating exams.

She is passionate about keeping our open spaces free from development and is actively involved in the prevention of building on Galmington Playing Field. Ensure that all children get the education they deserve and break down barriers to promote an inclusive society. She would like to see the heart put back into the County Town of Taunton, making it a vibrant and attractive town for residents and visitors once more.

Bev is keen to support and represent her ward by listening to the residents and their concerns and working hard on their behalf to get the answers they deserve.


Cotford St Luke


John Hassall

John is Parish Council Chair of Cotford St Luke.

He has interests in improving local transport, environment and local communities.

John has been campaigning on increasing the the 25 Bus Service running through Cotford to include Sundays.

He is also a campaigner for the extension of West Somerset Railway.


Creech St Michael

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Nick O’Donnell

Having grown up in Brighton, I moved to central Taunton seventeen years ago to take up the post of Head of Physics at Queen’s College.  I have a strong passion for Astronomy and I am currently chairman of the South Somerset Astronomy Society.

During my time at Queen’s I have introduced to the school a Model United Nations society which gets students to engage and debate in global issues.  I have taken students to MUN conferences that have been held all around the country and also, for many years, to one in Paris which was hosted at UNESCO.  We also organise our own conference, held each March, to which we have always striven to include local schools and help them also engage their young people in global issues.  Back in 2013, I was also involved with the IF campaign, in conjunction with the Methodist church and our school, where we actively engaged in getting people to sign our petition, a six-foot papier-mâché plate, and myself and my students were then invited, along with a select group of other schools from around the country, to submit our petition, of nearly a thousand signatures, directly to Downing Street.

I have spent much of my time in education in helping young people to see themselves as part of a community but also as individuals who can make a difference, be it to promote fair trade or to reduce their use of plastics.   I have also done the same at the Baptist church I attend in Taunton, where I have worked to promote it as a fair-trade church and to promote fair trade products to our members.

It is that drive and determination to enable change for the better that now makes me seek a more public role for myself as a local councillor.  I have a strong desire to protect our environment; in terms of reducing our carbon footprint; protecting our green fields and seeing more recycling of our resources as we aim to reduce the amount we throw away.

As a local councillor I look forward to being an active part of the process that will help bring about positive change for Taunton.

Tony Sutcliffe

Tony has been an IT & Project Manager, working throughout the UK, Europe and the Middle East. For 10 years he was a school governor, and is currently a parish councillor. He gave up time to help with flood relief efforts on the Somerset Levels, and is involved with a local Rotary branch.


Hatch & Blackdown

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Ross Henley

Ross was elected in by-election for Blackdown in December 2016 and is a very popular and visible Councillor! 

He is well know for attending local events, attending Parish Council meetings and not holding back on what he thinks.

He determined to hold the new council to account to make sure there are no service cuts to the rural communities from Churchinford to Hatch Beauchamp.


Halcon & Lane


Chris Booth

Having been a councillor since winning a by-election in 2016, I have tried to integrate myself into the community through regular communication, attending resident meetings and attending local surgeries. 

It's been a great pleasure to get to know of local residents and hope to meet many more. I want to continue working hard to make sure that services are not deprived to residents in my area in the new council. 

I always try to follow up any concerns raised by residents and regularly attend council meetings. I now have the experience and am still only 29! 

 Always happy to talk so feel free to get in touch. 

Federica Smith-Roberts

Federica believes in helping people, not using politics as a means of scoring points. ‘’The behaviour of our politicians in Parliament, particularly on Prime Minister’s Question Time, is why people don't want to engage in politics.

In addition to the work Federica does for local residents and in the Borough Council (among other things she chairs ‘corporate scrutiny’) she has also set up ‘Refugee Aid From Taunton (RAFT)’. This charity was set up in August 2015 to provide clothing and food to refugees in Calais and since commencement has raised significant assistance to these refugees.

Federica is a keen enthusiast for getting her message out using Social Media and using Social Media as a means of communicating with the electorate. ‘’I love it as it allows me to inform people on what is happening quickly and easily. I also get casework reported really effectively. For example, Claire (a local resident) on Thursday night let me know of a damaged tree, I emailed late at night and then phoned the team at 8am as potentially it was dangerous. The tree service team were excellent, came out that morning and made it safe - great service all round!’’


Manor & Tangier


Martin Peters

I have lived in Manor and Tangier ward for 12 years and I work in the ward, for the NHS, at Musgrove Hospital. I have been a HCA for 8 years, dedicated to patient care and working with people from all backgrounds. Up until 2010, I worked for Taunton Deane Borough Council in planning admin, gaining experience of the planning process and using my degree in geography and history. I am a member of the Royal College of Nursing and the Electoral Reform Society and active in Taunton Amnesty.

I have a record of campaigning on local environmental issues such as bus provision and cycle paths eg submitting a petition with 1,000 signatures in favour of pedestrianisation on Sundays and better cycle routes. I have been supporting the Taunton Area Cycling Campaign and I am pleased that Taunton has obtained Garden Town status. Over the last few years I have been used to working cross-party in a number of organisations including Compass and Make Votes Matter. I strongly believe in enhancing our green spaces, improving public transport and the provision of more social and affordable housing.

I will listen and act on the views of local residents.


Milverton & District


Eddie Eatwell

I’m currently a full-time husband, father and grandfather.

I’ve had the luck to be in the right place at the right time repeatedly so have enjoyed 3 completely different and successful careers.

Starting as an apprentice draughtsman in a fledgling (and rapidly expanding) computer industry I quickly became a design engineer, project manager and engineering manager. I am proud to have helped develop some of the country’s first data routers, word processors and process control systems. Fortunately my employer did not take my advice to steer clear of mobile telephones as they ‘will never catch on’. Eventually I started my own company to develop and produce specialist security equipment for the government. This collapsed when Maggie Thatcher transferred the contract to an American company.

There weren’t any managing director vacancies at the local job centre so I was sent to the nearby catholic secondary school as an instructor (these do the job of a teacher for half the money).

I then worked for 2 of the larger north London councils as a noise enforcement officer. I was often working alone, or with a single bodyguard, in areas noted for riots, crime and drug use. I treat everyone with respect, and consequently almost all the people I had to deal with were courteous and helpful. I was seconded to the neighbourhood management team for 6 months to help introduce a high-tech smart way of working. In this department every pothole, crack in the pavement, fly tip or overhanging branch was recorded, sorted out and inspected. What a difference to the way our own towns and villages are being neglected.

I would like to represent Milverton and District because I think the current Tory administration have failed to provide the leadership and forward vision that the ward needs. I have leadership skills and will not tolerate incompetence or failure.


Minehead Central


Andrew Kingston-James

Andrew has lived in Minehead since 2010, moving here to join his partner Mark who is born and bred in Minehead.  He has his own Human Resources business, which provides staffing advice to many local businesses.

Andrew has played many roles in the local community.  He was once Deputy Mayor of Minehead, and helped to organise the flood plan for the town, which makes sure that fallen branches and other debris are removed from the Bratton Stream and Parks Walk to keep the rivers flowing.

“I have worked to transform the Old Hospital into a multi-purpose community centre,” says Andy.  “If I am re-elected, I will do all I can to keep this important project moving forward.”

Cllr Kingston-James is also a school governor at Minehead Middle School, so he’s keen to see the Liberal Democrats’ manifesto pledge for free bus passes for teenage students be implemented.  

Jill Dillamore

I have lived in West Somerset for over 8 years.

I believe in the rights of the individual, both present day and for future generations.  I care passionately about the environment and the sustainability of the towns and the surrounding countryside. 

Until I retired I specialised in European law, health, safety and the environment but always ensuring financial sustainability.  

Now that public transport has been drastically reduced, I am the secretary for volunteer drivers, who are called upon by those who have difficulty getting to essential services such as the local doctors, shopping and hairdresser. I am also a voluntary team leader and chair of the West Somerset employment hubs originally set up by West Somerset Council and is now a not for profit organisation. I was a Stogursey parish councillor for a number of years attending and reporting on numerous communities relating to the local area such as The Hinkley Point Site Stakeholder meetings.

With your vote I promise to explore with you innovative ideas to take Minehead and the surrounding areas forward to the benefit of ourselves and future generations.


Minehead North


Glenys Harrison–Poole

Glenys was born in Minehead and lived here almost all her life.  She currently lives with three Democratic Dogs and the family can often be spotted on the streets of the town.

Glenys worked as a teacher at Minehead First School and served as a school governor for sixteen years.  She still teaches part-time and sings with the Minehead Street Choir.

She cares passionately about the environment of Exmoor.  “I am very excited to see the environmental pledges in the Liberal Democrat Manifesto,” she says.

If she is elected, she will campaign for better bus services in and around West Somerset. “I will also be fighting to restore train services between Minehead and Taunton.  This service could be bringing in so much more trade for our local businesses, and reduce the pressure on our roads as well,” she said.

Minehead is a wonderful place to live, and Glenys looks forward to a chance to represent its lovely people.




Sarah lithgow

Sarah has lived in Wellington for over 30 years, and before that she grew up and went to school in Taunton.

She is married with three grown up children, and is currently a teacher at a local secondary school and has been for over 30 years.

During her time there, Sarah has been a school representative for the National Union of Teachers. Sarah also does voluntary work as a first aider and youth leader with St. John’s Ambulance.

Sarah is interested in promoting a high quality education for all children and young people. She is driven to create equality of opportunity in society.


North Curry & Ruishton


Sue Buller

Sue lives in Thornfalcon with her husband Mike, two cats and four alpacas (The Fab Four), names John, Paul, George and Ringo!

Sue is retired and prior to retirement she was a partner in a top tier firm of chartered accountants. Her career involved travelling across the country so she has good experience of what quality infrastructure/transport looks like across the UK, and is ready to apply this knowledge on the Council.

Sue's main reasons for standing in the 2019 district elections are:

  • She is interested in infrastructure and by this Sue means schools, education, more social housing, joined up transport, cycle ways, NHS, and to essentially bring back the ‘feel good’ factor to our County Town. This includes helping the less fortunate, the elderly, introducing more children's facilities, reducing inequality and bringing about a more inclusive society.

  • One Tory MP recently compared Taunton with Aleppo, disgraceful! However, in saying this, the MP criticised his own party’s running of TDBC, which most of us would agree with!

  • We do not need another expensive hotel in our town but we do desperately need many other facilities and fresh ideas, which bring good employment to our area. Sue’s aim is to help provide and implement these ideas.

Sue wishes to help to make Tauntonians feel proud of their home town again and to help provide a future where the next generations really do want to stay and work. 

Phil Stone

Phil is currently the Deane Councillor for North Curry, Stoke St Gregory and Burrowbridge and has represented this lovely rural area for almost 20 years.

He takes a real interest in all aspects of community life in the villages which he represents. As Vice Chairman of North Curry Parish Council, Phil understands how important the role of Parish councillors is in helping to shape the future of the local community, ranging from minor issues like dog bins to major housing developments. Phil also attends most Parish council meetings of the other Parishes he represents to try to keep on top of local issues.  

Phil holds a range of voluntary roles, including footpath liaison officer, tree warden for North Curry, a member of the White Street sports management committee and chair of a local wildlife group. Phil led the establishment of a community woodland and works with other volunteers to manage the site for local residents. Flooding remains a serious threat to many in the Ward, not just from tidal rivers but as a result of poor maintenance of drains and roadside ditches.  

Phil is looking forward to representing residents of Ruishton and Stoke St Mary which will be included in the enlarged Ward after May this year. Phil represented Ruishton and Thornfalcon for years prior to his move to North Curry. 


North Town


Caroline Ellis

Caroline grew up in North Town attending North Town School.

After a career campaigning successfully for democratic reforms like freedom of information and winning new rights for disabled people she returned to North Town with her family in 2010. With husband Gideon she created French Weir Affordable Homes to deliver social housing locally.

Her campaign ‘20’s Plenty for North Town’ for enforcement of a 20mph speed limit along a key stretch of Staplegrove Road reflects a determination to improve safety and quality of life for North Town Residents.

She is a member of the wonderful Frieze Hill Orchard and has run activities for the local home education community.

“ I am passionate about the Lib Dem Planet Positive agenda for the new council with plans for zero carbon homes and public transport,council disinvestment from fossil fuels and stronger protection for our precious green spaces at its heart.”


Norton Fitzwarren & Staplegrove

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Dixie Darch

Dixie has been a resident of Nailsbourne near Kingston St Mary for 27 years. She has recently retired after a long teaching career in Further Education, before which she worked as a cartographic draughtsman at Taunton Hydrographic Department.

She has adult children and grandchildren, and is ardent about the need to act on climate change to secure our future and save our environment. She wants Taunton to become a Garden Town in the realest sense, with green spaces for wildlife and people, as well as a thriving town centre where independent sustainable businesses can flourish.

She supports Taunton Area Cycling Campaign for improved cycling and pedestrian routes as well as Citizens UK, an apolitical organisation which works for social good. In her own ward she is determined that existing residents should experience minimum disruption but maximum gain from the housing development that has already been agreed. Dixie is committed to working hard to support and represent the residents in her ward.

Ed Firmin

Ed has lived in Norton Fitzwarren his whole life and knows the local area, including Staplegrove and Kingston, well. He worked in the Norton Co-Op store for 4 years, an experience which gave him regular contact with local people. He has been serving on Norton’s Parish Council since last September and takes an interest in local issues. As a relatively youthful candidate, Ed is in touch with the needs of younger people and is keen to promote the Lib. Dem. proposal to provide free bus passes for young  people for local journeys, as well as improvements to the cycling network.


Old Cleeve & District

Peter Pilkington

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I am the current  Liberal Democrat Councillor for the ward of Dunster & Timberscombe

but as you may be aware the Conservative-controlled Councils have decided to merge our council to make the new council of Somerset West & Taunton.

The result of the New Council formation has resulted in Boundary Changes and the new ward  Old Cleave and District.

Our Manifesto  includes a commitment to be Carbon Neutral by 2030 and I have been active with this initiative in the council promoting  the rollout of a Electric Vehicle charging network and have helped to secure £20000 of funding for this purpose, also the network is the start of a larger project to make local public transport available and frequent again with electric buses large and small and electric car share schemes.

I am also a rural housing network contact and active in sourcing land for affordable housing and self-build projects.

A vote for myself and my fellow Liberal Democrats means you WILL be represented and listened to, our aim is to enable and empower and partner with you for the benefit of all our residents  

Marcus kravis

Marcus (50), a has lived in the ward for over 20 years and has been campaigning locally for most of that time, after first getting involved and local politics at the age of 26 and as a Councillor was always heavily involved in the community and local issues.

Far from being part of the establishment, Marcus has witnessed what a good the good times and the bad times in West Somerset. Although he is sad to see West Somerset Council’s demise, he is excited that this could be the chance of a new era for West Somerset but believes that this will not happen unless we have change. He is proud to be running as part of a team with Peter Pilkington, and know that if they are elected, could be part of a bigger new team in charge. A team that will be a force for good.

Marcus is aware of the challenges facing West Somerset in the coming years and want to be able to work with our communities to make sure that they can grow and thrive for now and the future. Marcus wants to help. Whether this be protecting our environment, our schools, our public transport and housing.  Marcus believes in liberal values and social justice and that the new Old Cleeve and District ward needs a Councillor who will represent all the communities tirelessly, fighting for a better deal for West Somerset the area and its residents. If elected Marcus will never forget that he is working for all the people in the ward and will be answerable to them when the time to vote comes around again.

Periton & Woodcombe


Benet Allen

Benet was elected to West Somerset Council in February 2018.  He lives in Minehead, works for a local coach company, and plays a leading role in the campaign for a train service between Minehead and Taunton. He can sometimes be found driving the Minehead town bus service.

He says, "Government and Council cuts have decimated our public transport over the past 10 years. Even now Taunton’s Park and Ride sites are at risk.” He wants to change this.

The Liberal Democrats launched a petition which forced our council to give the Park & Ride a year’s reprieve. Now we are determined to make that a long term future, which is essential to control congestion in the town centre. We will introduce new stops at Musgrove and on South Road to increase use of the service - with the aim of making it self-financing.

Cllr Allen says “If you re-elect me, I will continue to campaign for better public transport links across Somerset West and Taunton.”

On a side note, he’s also a helicopter filming pilot, and he hopes you enjoyed his aerial pictures on the film ‘Fisherman’s Friends’!


Porlock & District

Scilla Barney

Born on Exmoor I have lived here for most of my life and consequently I understand how hardwe all work to make it an economically viable place to live.

I have served on the Minehead and selworthy Parish council for over 20yrs ,and have been a parent governor at Porlock School where I co-founded a school action group to install seat belts in buses and taxis.

I also co-founded the Holnicote Tenants Association in 2001 which worked with the National Trust to improve their properties and the lives of their tenants.

The Allerford Community Orchard is my latest venture this has been handed over by the National Trust to the Parish Council.

We hope to establish a wildflower meadow and provide a community space for all to enjoy.


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Lee Baker

Lee has lived in Somerset all his life, and wants to see Taunton thrive, not stagnate.  He is now leader of a team providing financial advice, on behalf of a major high street bank,  to agricultural businesses and farmers across the UK. His teenage children are all at school in Taunton. He wants to improve opportunities for local families to be able to live in good quality affordable and rented housing locally and wants the Council to stand up to developers who don't want to build enough of this kind of home. He supports a 'resident friendly' parking policy which puts the needs of residents first. He also supports the Lib Dem policy of affordable employment areas for start-up businesses, to bring higher paid jobs into the town, and protecting our green spaces from encroachment.

Rosemary Sabel

Rosemary has lived in Taunton for nearly twelve years and is a public health researcher. Her research has covered housing, transport and community - all relevant to helping local people.  Rosemary is enjoying meeting local residents of Priorswood and is passionate about looking after local people's interests in new housing developments and fighting for safe play areas for children.  Rosemary also believes in ‘roads for residents’: looking at the best options for parking, crossings and speed limits. 

Rosemary supports Liberal Democrat plans for a Research and Development Centre, as a hub to bring environmentally conscious and high quality employment to Taunton, with spinoffs for other types of jobs and local opportunities.


Rockwell Green

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stephen kaye

I have been associated with Wellington for 19 years and have been fortunate enough to live in this beautiful part of the country for the last 10 years.

My working life has been running my own businesses. Now that I am retired I have time to follow my interests which of course includes my family life. I feel it’s important for me to give something back to the community where I live. I am passionate about getting the best for all our local residents. I believe it’s important to listen to concerns and take action to get things done. Support for our local schools is vital for the next generations coming through. Tackling the challenges of sustainable local transport and housing are of great concern to me and I am especially concerned about the rise in rough sleepers on our streets.


South Quantock


Mike Rigby

Mike has served as the county councillor for the Lydeard division, covering much of the new South Quantock ward, for six years, serving as a doughty defender of his communities against the worst of austerity.  Attracted to the Liberal Democrats policy platform, especially the plans to regenerate Taunton, Mike has joined them in trying to elect a new administration for a new council, an administration with the ambition, energy, policy and plans to put the shine back on the county town.  Committed to fighting for fair funding for our councils, schools and local services, Mike will continue to be a strong voice for the community against the wall of Conservative apathy about Somerset.  A qualified town planner, Mike intends to lead reform of the council's planning function, which has failed the people for many years.


Trull, Pitminster and Corfe


Sarah Wakefield

Sarah has lived in Pitminster and Blagdon Hill for over 25 years. She works locally and has been a member of and former Chair of Pitminster Parish Council and of the PTA at Trull School when her three children were pupils. She is a member of her local church and new hall committee in Blagdon Hill.

Sarah is looking forward to representing this new ward and raising such issues as speeding traffic through our villages, lack of public transport and the minimising of the adverse impacts of the huge housing development planned at Comeytrowe. Our villages need to be protected from rat running vehicles and the Trull area must retain its separate vibrant community and not be swallowed up in the spread of the town.

Sarah hopes to meet many of the residents in the run up to the election and promises to be a listening and active voice on the new Council.  She is proud that our plans for Taunton are based on protecting and enhancing our environment.

Martin Hill

Martin was Vice Principal at Bridgwater College before embarking on a business career establishing his own companies, employing over 200 people. His youngest son is studying at Queen’s College.

Martin is committed to getting Firepool developed and finding sensible solutions to deal with traffic in Taunton.




Richard Lees

Richard has been a councillor in the Eastgate Ward for the past 20 years, and is looking forward to standing in the new Victoria Ward in the upcoming elections.

Richard works as an Advocate supporting disabled people, the elderly, and those with mental health issues. He is enthusiastic about helping others and doing his best to represent them.

Being blind himself, Richard understands more of what the people he champions are going through, and he wants to work for the whole community by improving lives of the disabled, elderly, and vulnerable in Taunton.

He has worked tirelessly for many years for the betterment of the community and others, and embodies the best of Taunton in himself as well as his work.

Simon Coles

Simon has served as one of the two District Councillors for the former Eastgate Ward since 2005, and has been County Councillor for the Taunton East Division since 2013. He has also been a school governor for many years and was even Chair of Governors for two years.

Simon believes in ensuring equal opportunities for all. Amongst the many improvements he has supported in Taunton has been the consistent campaigning for improvements to Victoria Park. Simon was also instrumental in the removal of ‘legal highs’ from our town.

Simon is concerned with the issues of regeneration of Firepool and the town centre, and feels that more needs to be done in this area. Doing so will provide associated job creation and necessary infrastructure, along with the creation of a new business park and infrastructure works at Junction 25 on the M5. This should allow maximum benefit from the proposed dualling of the A358 and creation of the long awaited Henlade By-Pass.




Danny Wedderkopp

Come this May, Danny will have been a Councillor for 12 years. He is originally from Newcastle but has lived in Taunton/Somerset since 1984.

Danny is standing again as he wants to see a strong Liberal Democrat presence on the Council. The Liberal Democrats have a positive and practical plan for the coming years, and the other candidates standing are all excellent people, determined to do their best by the people of Taunton Deane.

Danny was also a County Councillor up to 2017, and so has lots of experience in representing residents and in making a difference.


Watchet & Williton

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James Russell

James has lived in West Somerset and Taunton Deane since he was twelve. He grew up in Bicknoller, and feels West Somerset is his home. James is a Software developer and ran his own small business for years, supporting other local businesses with IT solutions.

James says “I believe in the freedom of the individual and feel everybody should be protected from abuses of power and authoritarianism.”

To deliver this, James feels that a few key services need to be addressed, including Public Transport, Small Business Support, Affordable Housing, and Education. James says “If you elect me, I will fight to make sure the needs of West Somerset are not ignored any longer.”

As a parish councillor he has fought against developments that do not offer enough social housing and has also fought with groups such a Frack Free EQS to protect our local area from the dangers of fracking.


Wellington East

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Keith Wheatley

Keith was a journalist, author and publisher for much of his life, writing for newspapers ranging from the Daily Mirror to the Sunday Times. He founded a successful regional magazine company in 1990 and, having sold it 10 years later, went back to university to qualify as an English teacher.

He taught for 10 years before taking relatively early retirement to set up the hyper-local online news service Around 15,000 people each get their local news about the TA21 area from this digital local newspaper.

Keith moved to Wellington in 2009 and has been active in the community serving as chair of the Wellington Business Association for three years and recently working with the Town Centre Working Group on projects as diverse as a Wellington film festival and a pop-up shop in the High St. 


Wellington North


Mark Lithgow

Mark has lived in Wellington with his wife and three children for 30 years. He cares passionately about our area and improving local services. He is currently on the Wellington Town Council, demonstrating his commitment to the area. He has also recently stopped full time employment to focus on his long term desire to support the people of Wellington.

Mark is keen to become more involved in the organisations that care for and educate the young and old alike in Wellington. He has recently joined as one of the governors of Beech Grove School, and has also been appointed onto the boards of three Wellington based ‘Community Interest Companies’: Wellington Community Support Services LimitedWestcountry Health Education Research Enterprise (WHERE), and Wellington Community Counselling. 

Locally, Mark and his family have all been involved with St John Ambulance. Mark has worked with youth services for many years and has been on the Restorative Justice Panel – a cause he firmly believes in. 

Mark loves living in Wellington and plans to find ways to make any new development part of the community and bring with it the infrastructure and investment that our town needs.


Wellington South


Nancy Powell-brace

Information to come soon!


Wellsprings & Rowbarton


Sue lees

Sue has been a Councillor for the past 12 years, representing the Fairwater Ward. Under the new boundary changes she will be standing in the Wellsprings and Rowbarton Ward. She is determined to help people in the ward and brings a wealth of experience to the table to assist in this.

As stated by Sue:

“I am a visually impaired person but this does not prevent me from playing my part in helping any constituent who needs help. I look forward to meeting many of you as the weeks progress.”

Marcia Hill

Marcia has lived in the Wellsprings & Rowbarton Ward for 42 years and has been a councillor for 26 years. She is married with two daughters and two granddaughters.

Marcia believes strongly in the rights of tenants and the importance of their  participation in the decision making process. She wants more social housing to meet the needs of the people and to combat homelessness. She will continue to listen and respond to the needs and concerns of the local community.

As a proud Tauntonian of 70 years who has served as Mayor for the borough, she has a strong passion for the town and the Deane, which has never swayed. She is determined that our County Town be a great place to live and work and that our children and future generations to come will want to remain.


West Monkton & Cheddon Fitzpaine


eamonn leniston

Eamonn has lived in Monkton Heathfield for nearly 40 years.

He joined Avon and Somerset Constabulary in Taunton in 1994 as a Special Constable and in 2003 became on of the first PCSOs in Somerset. Now retired, during his time in the police he was a Union Representative, as well as covering many beats including West Monkton and Monkton Heathfield. He got to know the area and its residents extremely well during this period, and was inspired through this to try and help the community.

Eamonn decided to become a candidate for the Liberal Democrats as he felt that ordinary people weren’t being heard, and because he didn’t like what was happening to the local area. Having served the community through the role of PCSO, Eamonn now wishes to dedicate his time to serving through a role of councillor. He is determined to make sure that everyone’s voices will be heard, and excited for the opportunity to stand.


Wilton & Sherford


Alan Wedderkopp

Alan has been a member of the Liberal Democrats since they were formed in 1988, and an environmentalist since 1966. He served on TDBC for 12 years as Deputy Leader and environment portfolio holder. 

He has represented Wilton & Sherford on Somerset County Council for 6 years, and has immensely enjoyed doing all he can for the residents. He lives in Wilton, has done for 25 years and knows the ward well. It made sense for him to stand for Wilton & Sherford on TDBC as he already represents them on the County Council. 

More widely on his experiences, he’s lived in the real world as well! He spent 6 years working in a coal mine and studying coal mining. Then he worked for 35 years worldwide in the oil industry, rising from roughneck to offshore installation manager. Prior to that he was a regular soldier in the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers and spent two years on active service in Korea. 

Alan is dedicated to Wilton & Sherford and is enthusiastic about the prospect of representing this ward on the District Council.


Wiveliscombe & District

Danny Clark-Lowes.JPG

Danny clark-lowes

Danny graduated from Cambridge University, joined Shell as a geologist and then, as a mature student undertook a PhD at Imperial College, London University. In 1994 he moved to Wiveliscombe in Somerset, running his own geological consultancy from home and working on projects in Siberia and Libya. From his first years in Somerset he has been involved in the Liberal Democrat Constituency party, being its Chairman some years ago now. Danny is a keen Liberal and the ideals of the Liberal Democrats run strongly through his veins. Danny loves living in Wiveliscombe and wants to help make positive improvements in areas including measures to protect our environment and to build active communities in our rural areas, attracting business and employment. He believes our District desperately needs new leadership and fresh ideas to build a better future. That’s why he is standing and asking you to vote Liberal Democrat.