As many of you will know, I won the Taverham North local council by-election held yesterday by 159 votes.
The result was
Conservative John Griffin 471 - 41%
Green Party Jennifer Parkhouse 54 - 4.5%
Liberal Democrats Nich Starling 630 - 54.5%
I just want to say a massive thank you to all those people who voted for me and all those people who offered kind words verbally, through emails, twitter and on the phone before and since.
People in Taverham North were obviously keen to vote and are enthusiastic about the idea of having a councillor that will be visible and active in the community. This point was made to me more clearly than ever yesterday when person with a lot of local political knowledge asked me outside the polling station "Who is the Tory taking numbers on the door ?". When I explained "That's the other Conservative Councillor for Taverham North", the reply was "But I've never seen him before !" The fact that local people have no idea who their councillor for the last six years is is a shocking indictment of the way Taverham and Thorpe Marriott have been taken for granted for so long.
So what's next ? Lots of local problems to write letters about, lots of issues to get involved with and lots of thank yous to say and write.
More than anything else though, I don't take lightly the responsibility that comes with being a councillor, I've been a councillor before and I know it requires dedication and hard work. Similarly, my pledge to keep residents involved and ruly in touch with what I am doing on the council and the issues I am taking up is one I will definitely be keeping. Residents despair of politicians who turn up one every four years and expect to be re-elected, thats why turnouts keep falling and people have such little trust in politics.
So local people can expect to hear from me regularly whilst I am representing them and I can promise too that whilst being a Lib Dem, my first priority is and will remain Taverham North.
So again, thank you everyone.