Tuesday, 27 April 2010


One problem with the media inspired Lib Dem 'surge' is that it's confusing voters in this constituency. Labour are clearly the best placed party to take the Tory seat , came second last time, have 12 District Councillors to the lib dem 1 and have wiped out the lib Dems to such an extent that they've had to import a candidate from Wells who pretends to have a Cannington address!! (lib Dems regionally don;t even advocate a tactical vote for him!!)Sadly- but not unsurprisingly, the Lib Dems have , as usual, resorted to lying and distorting the figures.

As the 3rd glossy lib dem leaflet was mailed to homes in Bridgwater and West Somerset this week claiming 'Labour Can't win here' and showing 'figures to prove this' we can reveal clearly the depths to which the lib dems have sunk in order to con the voters into squandering their anti-tory votes.

Lib Dems can't use the real figures -from the last General Election in 2005 which show tory on 21240 Labour IN SECOND PLACE on 12771 and Lib Dems 3rd on 10,940 - because this would show the truth-that they are in 3rd place and it;s THEM who can't win. And....they can't use the District Council Election results from 2007 because this would show Labour 12 councillors and Lib Dem 1 (the rest being Tory or Independent) and finally they can't show the 2009 County Council Election results for the constituency as this would show 10 conservative, 1 Labour and NOT A SINGLE LIBDEM...so they chose to pick a selection of votes based on libdems standing in areas where Labour didn't stand and added up the lib dem votes there!! Oddly, if they'd added the votes where both Labour and libdem stood , the results would have been 4757 con, 2073 LABOUR IN SECOND PLACE and 2031 Lib Dems in 3rd place.

"The LibDems are the dirtiest of all the parties in elections" said Labour Candidate Kathy Pearce who has been knocking on doors and is now on her 3rd leaflet since January with an army of dedicated footsoldiers "Because they had Clegg on equal footing with Brown and Cameron on the TV debates it gives the impression the Lib Dems have an equal chance of winning, but the way the British voting system works is they have to get hundreds of thousands more votes in key areas to actually take enough seats to win. That isn;t being made clear to people and-as usual with the lib Dems- giving false hope to people. The reality in Bridgwater is that Labour is in 2nd position with a strong organisation on the ground and a Lib Dem vote would just let the Tories in."

Kathy has been stepping up her door knocking to counter the Lib Dems scandalous misinformation face to face with the voters. "From Minhead to Bridgwater we've been getting the message across and have been getting a really wonderful and positive response. What is clear is the people DON'T want the Tories back, DO want rid of Liddell-Grainger and are gradually realising that the Lib Dems are nothing new and just-as ever offer false hope."

Friday, 23 April 2010


Labour candidate Kathy Pearce has signed up to a mutual declaration of NO PLATFORM FOR THE BNP with Green candidate Charlie Graham through the auspices of Bridgwater Trades Union Council and Bridgwater Hope Not Hate. This follows the disgraceful Election Hustings at the Holy Trinity Church in Hamp, Bridgwater, organised by the 'Mothers Union'which invited the BNP. Their candidate Donna Treanor (who lives in Croydon) turned up and shared the platform with UKIP (whose views weren't far off their own) and the opportunistic Lib Dem candidate Theo Butt Phillip (from Wells). Tory canddiate Ian Liddell-Grainger (who hasn;t turned up to any public meetings so far) put the cat amongst the pidgeons by saying in the West Somerset Free Press that the BNP had to be invited or it wasn't 'democratic' (He also didn;t turn up anyway).

Charlie Graham -the Green candidate - walked out of the meeting - which had to have 2policemen stationed on the door.

Kathy - who had sent her apologies to the meeting anyway before she even knew if the BNP had been invited said "I'm not prepared to share a platform with any party that would deny the right of democracy to a section of the constituency. I was not at the meeting but I would have walked out too, partly because the media interest the BNP generate overrides any other issue. She turns up to one meeting and everybody's interested in it!"

The 2 progressive candidates put out a joint statement through HOPE NOT HATE and backed by the Bridgwater Trades Unions Council.
PRESS STATEMENT, 22nd April 2010

We, the undersigned were disappointed by the decision by the Mothers’ Union at Hamp Church, Bridgwater to invite the BNP’s prospective parliamentary candidate to address its meeting on Wednesday 21st April.

This is the first recorded meeting in Bridgwater’s proud history to have been addressed by a member of a fascist group. That this should have been organized by a local church group is deeply disturbing.

The BNP is a fascist party, similar to Hitler’s Nazis, and its aims are to sow division through racial hatred. Its leaders believe in white supremacy and authoritarian government. To allow them a platform to express such dangerous, twisted and abhorrent views is to grant them the same status and legitimacy as candidates from normal democratic parties. It is also an insult to many who fought fascism in Europe in the 30s and 40s.

There is no legal obligation for an organization to invite a candidate to speak whose views they find to be dangerous and morally repugnant.

We applaud other groups in the constituency who have organized election meetings, such as the Bridgwater Senior Citizens Forum and Minehead Christians Together for taking the principled decision not to invite the BNP candidate.

We call upon all other organizations and candidates in the Bridgwater & West Somerset constituency to refuse to offer or share a platform with fascists.


Tuesday, 20 April 2010


Nominations have closed for the Bridgwater and West Somerset constituency in the forthcoming General Election at 1600 hrs today, Tuesday, April 20th. Labours Candidate Kathy Pearce - the key contender to the incumbent Tory MP Ian Liddel-Grainger , has 6 rivals to beat in this crucial contest for the future of the country.

The candidates are:-

PEARCE, Kathy – The Labour Party.
Kathy is Bridgwater born and bred and works as a Family Support Worker. She is a District Councillor and deputy leader of the Labour group. Labour came second to the Conservatives in 2005 and the party has been campaigning since the start of the year in a bid to capitalise on the unpopularity of the Tory candidate in the wake of his total failure to get involved in the 'Save the Sedgemoor Splash' campaign which Kathy was a leading activist in trying to stop the Tories on Sedgemoor closing the popular local pool.

LIDDELL-GRAINGER, Ian – The Conservative Party ;- The Tory sitting MP with the 8,000 majority seems unassailable-especially at a time when Cameron and his Etonian cohorts are riding high in the Polls - but the Tory lead has been dropping as more and more people see through what they offer and fear a return to the disastrous 1980s when Thatchers Tories devastated working class communities, battled with Unions and tried to impose the Poll Tax on us. The Tories say they are the party for 'change' . Peoples chins drop . Led by old Etonians ? Liddel-Grainger a descendant of Queen Victoria...we know what change they mean!

BUTT PHILIP, Theo – Liberal Democrats;- Despite their so-called 'surge' Nationally the Lib Dems are in 3rd place in Bridgwater & West Somerset. As a party they have been wiped out at town and district elections over the past 10 years and are a spent force even having to import their candidate from Wells.However, the main danger is that voting Lib Dem will simply split the anti Tory vote and let Liddel-Grainger keep his seat!!

HOLLINGS, Pete – UKIP;- The far right UK Independence party are fielding a candidate whose election address opens with anti-Immigration sloganeering and doesn't go much further. UKIP - whose slogan 'straight talking' is a poor cover for downright rudeness as evidenced by former leader Nigel Farages recent abusive tirade against the Belgian people, and thinly disguised xenophobia. The only party led by a Lord they are far from the party of the people they claim to be and are largely based on the former Europhobic Far Right of the Conservative Party.

GRAHAM, Robert Charles – Green Party ;- Charlie Graham has thrown his environmentalist hat into the ring again and attached to it a proud and decent record as an anti war, anti nuclear and anti nazi campaigner - but with barely 2,000 votes last time round and no electoral success in the local elections his Party has a mountain to climb to make any impact and would benefit clearly from the PR system promised if Labour get back in.

TREANOR, Donna – British National Party ;- The far right BNP are standing for the first time in a Bridgwater Parliamentary election. Candidate Donna Treanor has never been to the town and knows nothing about it. A Scot who lives in Croydon she is well known for her anti immigrant tirades on the web . Oh and still dressing up as 'Madonna' for the Sun newspaper. Oh and on a recent visit to Somerset (she went to Yeovil instead) she announced she would 'reveal exactly how much the council spends on Ethnic Minorities' (oh dear....)

CUDLIPP, Bob – Independent;- Local man Bob has stood as an Independent Conservative in the past and is a thorn in the side of his former party.A last minute decision to stand it seems. Fairly described as 'a bit of a wild card' the best we can hope is that he takes dissilusioned Tories and doesn't distract serious voters......


In a shock declaration on the TV Politics Show, the Bridgwater & West Somerset LibDem candidate Theo Butt-Phillips (who lives in Wells) said that if elected he would "Vote to repeal the hunting act in a free vote ". This puts him at odds with popular opinion yet clearly reflects how the parties and candidates stand on the issue. All 22 Labour candidates and all 15 Green candidates in the south west would retain the hunting ban while the right wing parties (Conservative & UKIP) show a majority for repealing the ban. In the case of the libDems 13 would retain 3 would repeal and 4 are undecided.

Ivor Annets from the League Against Cruel Sports was so shocked by the 'progressive' candidates stance that he asked "Would you also bring back badger baiting!!? 80 % support the hunting ban so why do you want to put the clock back!?" The Lib Dem replied "Leave it to the farmers and local hunts who know the best way to deal with it. Let the Countryside get on with it".

Labour campaign organiser Brian Smedley said "While trying to play to the Tory vote or maybe just plain confused - Butt Phillips has clearly shot himself in the foot and alienated many of his potential supporters. A Lib Dem vote always was and still is a wasted vote for an opportunist bunch of unconnected individuals who couldn't hold a line if their laundry depended on it!"

Labour candidate Kathy Pearce included suporting the Hunting ban in her Top 10 campaign issues when she launched her candidacy and is a passionate opponent of hunting. In a statement she said;-

" I strongly support the current hunting ban, on the following grounds:

1. I have always believed that in a civilised society, the act of hunting is unacceptably cruel and barbaric. Whilst I acknowledge that there are occasions when pest control is necessary, exemptions within the Hunting Act are designed to allow farmers, landowners and managers to carry out humane pest control on their land. I agree with the League Against Cruel Sports that this should be carried out by trained markesmen, who are competent in such activities.

2. The predicted dire effects on the rural economy have not come to pass. A recent Ipsos Mori poll has shown that 72% of the rural population do not want hunting with dogs to be made legal again. There is evidence to suggest that there has been an increase in interest in drag hunting, which could be down to the fact that the cruelty element has been removed.

3. I strongly support the findings of the recent poll carried out by the League Against Cruel Sports and the International Fund for Animal Welfare that:

75% of the public support the ban on hunting
84% support the ban on deer and stage hunting
85% support the ban on hare hunting and coursing.

I therefore believe that the Conservative proposal to repeal the ban would indeed be a retrograde step for this country."

Monday, 12 April 2010


On the day that Gordon Brown launched Labour's Manifesto under the slogan A FUTURE FAIR FOR ALL , Bridgwater & West Somerset Labour candidate Kathy Pearce stepped up her own campaign to wrest the Constituency from Tory Misrule with her second leaflet.

Kathy's first leaflet has already gone out to 27,000 homes across the Constituency, which stretches from Bridgwater in the East through Watchet and Minehead to Porlock and Exmoor in the West, and has already firmly established her as the key challenger to the Tory incumbent Ian Liddel-Grainger who is proving to be less of an asset to the Conservatives than his 8,000 majority may seem.

The second leaflet drop , combined with canvassing and a poster and billboard campaign, kicked off on Bridgwater's Hamp estate where Kathy grew up and went to school and where she has been a popular local District Councillor for the last 10 years.

Kathy said "Everything we have achieved in the Bridgwater and West Somerset Constituency is because we've had a Labour Government from Sure Start supporting Families to the Introduction of the Minimum Wage and it's places like Hamp that would take the brunt of any future Conservative Government cuts - and I don;t want that to happen , so I'm fighting to win here and I'm proud to be part of the Labour Party and our Manifesto and the promises launched today!"

The key points in the Labour Party manifesto include:


Promise of "a choice of good schools in every area". Where parents are not satisfied, they will have the power to trigger a ballot on bringing in a new school leadership team from a "proven and trusted accredited provider" through a merger or takeover. Up to 1,000 secondary schools would be part of such an accredited schools group by 2015.

Every pupil leaving primary school is "secure in the basics," with a "three Rs" guarantee of one-to-one and small-group tuition for every child falling behind. In secondary school, every pupil would have a personal tutor and a choice of good qualifications.

Every young person to be guaranteed education or training until 18, with 75 per cent going on to higher education, or completing an advanced apprenticeship or technician level training, by the age of 30.


Legally binding guarantees for patients including the right to cancer test results within one week of referral, and a maximum 18 weeks' wait for treatment or the offer of going private.

Preventative healthcare through routine check-ups for the over-40s and a major expansion of diagnostic testing.

All hospitals to become foundation trusts, with successful ones given the support and incentives to take over those that are underperforming. Trusts given freedom to expand into primary and community care and to increase their private services, where these are consistent with NHS values and if they generate surpluses that are invested in NHS.

Promise to introduce a new National Care Service to ensure free care in the home for those with the greatest care needs. A cap on the cost of residential care so that everyone's homes and savings were protected from charges after two years in a home.


"Swift action" to be taken when police do not perform well. Where a police force or local basic command unit (BCU) consistently fails local people, Labour would ensure "either that the senior management team including the borough commander or chief constable is replaced, or it is taken over by a neighbouring force or BCU."

Legislation to give victims of anti-social behaviour financial support to pursue legal injunctions, with the costs met by the police, council, courts or other agency that let them down.


Pledge not to raise the 20p in the pound, 40p and 50p rates of tax. Renews previous promise not to extend scope of VAT to food, children's clothes, books, newspapers and public transport fares, but stops short of saying rate will remain at 17.5 per cent.


Pledge to build a hi-tech economy, supporting business and industry to create one million more skilled jobs and modernising our infrastructure with High Speed Rail, a Green Investment Bank and broadband access for all.

Target to achieve about 40 per cent low-carbon electricity by 2020 and create 400,000 new green jobs by 2015. New rules for takeovers, with government allowed to intervene in "public interest" in those affecting utilities and infrastructure. Would require a super-majority of two-thirds of shareholders in corporate takeovers.

Northern Rock could be turned back into building society under a drive to boost "mutualism". Labour would secure the best deal for the taxpayer from stakes in publicly controlled banks; introduce a new global levy on banks; and reform the rules for banking to ensure no repeat of past irresponsibility.


National minimum wage to rise at least in line with average earnings, and a new £40-a-week "better off in work" guarantee. Higher "living wage" paid by Whitehall departments to lowest-paid workers such as cleaners.

Create 200,000 jobs through the Future Jobs Fund, with a job or training place for young people who are out of work for six months. Benefits cut at 10 months if they refuse a place; and anyone unemployed for more than two years guaranteed work, but no option of life on benefits.

Paid paternity leave doubled from two weeks to a "father's month". Labour would work with employers to see how it could be taken flexibly – for example, by taking first two weeks round time of the birth and the remaining two during first year of baby's life.

Pledge to introduce new "toddler tax credit" of £4 a week from 2012 to give more support to all parents of young children – whether they want to stay at home or work.


"Double referendum" on same day on whether to move to Australian-style Alternative Vote for elections to the House of Commons (in which voters mark candidates in order preference) and to a democratic and accountable House of Lords. A free vote in Parliament on reducing the voting age from 18 to 16. Legislation to ensure parliaments sit for a fixed term and an all-party commission to chart a course to a written constitution. A statutory register of lobbyists, with MPs banned from working for lobbying companies and required to seek approval for paid outside appointments.

Tuesday, 6 April 2010



With the General Election now confirmed as May 6th and Opinion Polls today showing Labour up 4% and narrowing the gap on the shaky Tory lead, Bridgwater and West Somerset's Labour candidate Kathy Pearce took a break from campaigning to rally the troops with a bold call that Labour can take the Bridgwater seat.

Kathy said " Although the General Election won't be won or lost in this constituency we have been out campaigning for the best part of the year and the reaction we're getting back on the doorstep is positive and shows that the Tories locally might be in for a shock. People are massively dissapointed with their MP's failures and see Labour as the best way to cause an upset locally."

Labour came 2nd in the 2005 election in Bridgwater and West Somerset and now has 12 district councillors in the constituency compared to the Lib Dems who have dwindled to a solitary 1.

"People are extremely upset about what the Tories have done in this area." Kathy added " They won't forget the closure of the Sedgemoor Splash and Liddell-Grainger's total inactivity. People are realising just what it means to have Tories in power and in control of their Public Services!"

The ICM Poll in the Guardian today shows Tories on 37% (down 1%) and Labour on 33% (up 4%) with the Lib Dems way down in 3rd place on 21% (down 2%).

Kathy Pearce,who was born, educated and raised a family in the constituency, says "The Lib Dems are a spent force here and a wasted vote. If we seriously want to beat the Tories don't let them split the vote. Labour came second here last time and we are in the best position to take this seat."

Kathy, who is out and about canvassing and leafletting this week, will be officially launching her campaign at a fundraising Quiz Night at Unity House this Saturday 10th April.

To contact Kathy Pearce you can phone her on 07732736999 or email her on kathypearce2010@gmail.com or drop in to her Friday morning surgeries at Unity House (11am-1pm)

Monday, 5 April 2010


Information supplied by the Martin Ratfelder, Director of the Socialist Health Foundation proves that Labour has stood by it’s pledges made in Labour’s 2005 manifesto to sustain investment in the NHS to deliver it’s commitments to:

*Reduce waiting times
*Expand the NHS workforce
*Improve buildings and facilities
*Triple spending compared to 1997 levels

NHS spending increased from £33.5 billion in 1997/8 to £76.4 billion in 2005/6 and is expected to have reached £96.4 billion for the financial year 2008/9.
Expenditure in real terms will have increased by nearly 7% each year between 2000/01 and 2010/11, compared to average increases of 4% over the lifetime of the NHS. This represents the highest sustained increase in funding since the NHS was established.
The current Labour government has pledged to stick to its planned increase in NHS spending in 2010/11, which will take the total NHS budget to £105.8 billion. Thereafter, ‘frontline’ NHS spending will rise in line with inflation in 2011/12 and 2012/13.

The Conservative Party has not given any details about how it plans to protect health funding.

Kathy Pearce, Labour Candidate for Bridgwater and West Somerset says “Don’t forget what the Tories did to the NHS when they were in power. They cannot be trusted with our NHS”.