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Your Liberal Democrat Candidates for Southampton City Council

Benjamin Curd for Bargate Richard Blackman for Bassett Vijay Chopra for Bevois Olivia Reed for Bitterne James Read for Bitterne Park Amy Greenwood for Coxford Alexander Clifton-Melhuish for Freemantle Colin McDougall for Harefield Andy Beal for Millbrook Rob Naish for Peartree Adrian Ford for Portswood Simon Stokes for Redbridge Peter Galton for Shirley Phillip Mackin for Sholing Paul Clarke for Swaythling Sam Harris for Woolston

Southampton Liberal Democrats headerWelcome

Southampton Civic Centre

The Liberal Democrats exist to build and safeguard a fair, free and open society, in which we seek to balance the fundamental values of liberty, equality and community, and in which no-one shall be enslaved by poverty, ignorance or conformity.

As you know, Liberal Democrats Campaigners and Focus Teams work all year round to improve your community. If there is any way we can be of help, please do get in touch!

If you share our passion for working for local people and believe in the Liberal Democrats aims, why not join us? By being a member you keep in touch with the Party throughout the year, join us at our regular social events, and get a vote in all Party Elections.


  • Ben Curd
    Article: Apr 13, 2018
    By Southampton Liberal Democrats
    Benjamin Curd, Bargate candidate and Communities Spokesperson, has met with the Labour Cabinet member responsible to discuss our concerns regarding the Labour-run council's 'homeless clearance' scheme, which sees rough sleepers evicted from council car parks by a private security firm.

    As previously revealed by Southampton Liberal Democrats, Labour spent £1680 a month on a private security contract during a 'successful' trial to remove rough sleepers from the Grosvenor Square multi-storey car park, which if rolled out city-wide would cost an estimated £8400 a month.

    Benjamin commented:

    "I'm grateful for the opportunity to present our alternative proposals to the Councillor, which would see the money allocated to this scheme spent on measures that will actually help homeless people. For example, £8400 per month would be enough to employ three full-time case workers or hostel staff, or even pay for a three-month residential drug rehabilitation programme for 14 individuals over the course of a year.

    "However, I was disappointed to learn that as far as he knew, no investigation was made on how else the funds could be spent, and no local charities were consulted on whether the money could be better spent elsewhere.

    "I was also shocked to learn that during the trial, no support staff were present when the security sweeps of Grosvenor Square car park occured. This means that it is entirely possible that individuals were evicted from the car park at night with no guidance and support as to where they could seek alternative shelter.

    "I hope the Councillor will review this poorly-considered policy as a matter of urgency, and would be happy to meet with him again to discuss our proposals further."

    Rather than spend public money on private sector security, Southampton Liberal Democrats would like to see the funds put to better, more practical use, with long-term benefits for rough sleepers and other city residents.
  • James Read
    Article: Apr 12, 2018
    By Southampton Liberal Democrats

    Southampton Liberal Democrats have launched our 2018 Southampton City Council election campaign, as reported in the Echo today.

    James Read, candidate for Bitterne Park and Chair of Southampton Liberal Democrats, comments:

    "I'm very proud of the ambition and strength of our election campaign. We have produced a fully-costed budget that would allow us to fix more roads, expand our cycleways, boost Youth Services, adopt homelessness initiatives, and improve our air quality - and for less than Labour's 5.99% council tax hike. We are also leading the campaign to introduce portside power for cruise liner and container ship traffic.

    "In an insult to the people of Southampton, the Conservatives have failed yet again to provide a realistic proposal. Unlike them, Southampton Liberal Democrats are serious about Southampton, and have our fully-costed alternative budget to prove it. You can read it here: soton.lib.dm/SCCBudget2018.

    "I'm not the only person that's impressed with our campaign so far. Our candidates and canvassers are reporting the best feedback from residents we've had in years, with many committing to vote Liberal Democrat on May 3rd - including lots of former Labour and Conservative voters, who are increasingly downcast at the state of the parties nationally and locally.

    "Our roster of candidates includes former city councillors, such as Peter Galton in Shirley; long-time local campaigners, like Adrian Ford in Portswood; students, including Olivia Reed in Bitterne; and passionate individuals who joined us following the EU referendum, like Benjamin Curd in Bargate and Alexander Clifton-Melhuish in Freemantle. Several of our candidates have already been endorsed as the official anti-Brexit tactical vote candidate, with more endorsements expected in the coming days and weeks.

    "Between us we have a diverse range of skills and experience, and talent and enthusiasm that would really benefit the city. For full details of all of our candidates, please visit soton.lib.dm/MyLocalChampion.

    "It's clear to the people of Southampton that Labour are out of ideas, and failing to deliver on the basics like air quality, bin collection and street repair. Southampton Conservatives, meanwhile, are playing pie in the sky politics, with no idea about how to deliver any of it.

    "Southampton deserves better. The Liberal Democrats are the only sensible alternative to languid Labour and tired Tories. We are the real alternative, and we are ready to serve Southampton."

  • Article: Apr 10, 2018
    By Southampton Liberal Democrats

    A number of Southampton Liberal Democrat candidates have been endorsed by pro-EU campaigning organisation @48PercentPlus as the official anti-Brexit tactical vote (#ABTV) candidate.

    Portswood candidate Adrian Ford said of his endorsement:

    "I'm pleased and proud to have been endorsed by @48PercentPlus. The stance the Liberal Democrats have taken over Brexit is the right one - Southampton and the rest of the UK are already feeling the negative effects of Brexit, and we haven't even left the European Union yet.

    "I believe that we, the people, should be given a vote on whether to accept whatever deal Theresa May manages to strike with our EU partners, or to cancel Brexit altogether."

    Peter Galton, candidate for Shirley, remarked:

    "My Liberal Democrat colleagues and I, alongside supporters of other political parties and none, campaigned on the positive case to remain a member of the EU, and to continue receiving all the benefits that provided. The vote didn't go our way in 2016, but that hasn't stopped us from continuing to make the case that the UK is stronger, safer, and better-off as a member of the European Union.

    "Now that Labour and the Conservatives are toeing the UKIP line on Brexit, many Remain voters that previously supported those parties are considering their options. I hope this anti-Brexit tactical vote (#ABTV) endorsement will help me persuade some of those people to lend me their vote on May 3rd."

    Freemantle candidate Alexander Clifton-Melhuish comments:

    "I am unashamedly supportive of staying in the EU and believe we need all the facts to make a decision about whether to proceed with Brexit.

    "I'm standing against the Tory group leader on Southampton City Council, who through his support of Brexit is failing to represent the best interests of our city, and the interests of over 2,000 EU nationals living in Freemantle ward."

    James Read, candidate for Bitterne Park, adds:

    "The campaign to retain our membership of the European Union is not over. Voters have the chance on May 3rd to reject the Conservative and Labour vision for Brexit, and instead support their local pro-EU Liberal Democrat candidate."

    Other pro-EU Liberal Democrat candidates endorsed by @48PercentPlus include Richard Blackman (Bassett), Simon Stokes (Redbridge), and Paul Clarke (Swaythling).

  • Ben Curd, Grosvenor Square car park
    Article: Apr 6, 2018
    By Southampton Liberal Democrats

    Southampton Liberal Democrats have challenged the Labour-run city council to explain why they are prepared to hand over thousands of pounds a month to a private security firm to 'turf out' rough sleepers, rather than invest that money in measures that will actually help the homeless community.

    Following a Freedom of Information (FOI) request to the City Council, we have discovered that Labour spent £1680 a month on a private security contract during a 'successful' trial to remove rough sleepers from the Grosvenor Square multi-storey car park.

    If rolled out city-wide, costs would escalate to as much as £8400 a month.

    Communities Spokesperson and Bargate Council Candidate Ben Curd says:

    "I have writen to the Labour Cabinet member responsible for this scheme to voice my concerns over this policy. Typically, they're in no hurry to meet with me to discuss the issue.

    "Spending taxpayers money in this way does nothing to address the issues faced by rough sleepers, it merely serves to dehumanise them. Is this the way we should treat some of the most vulnerable members of society? Southampton Labour seem to think so.

    "This money could be put to much better use, uses might actually help people. For example, £8400 per month would be enough to employ three full-time case workers or hostel staff, or even pay for a three-month residential drug rehabilitation programme for 14 individuals over the course of a year.

    "Rather than spend public money on private sector security, Southampton Liberal Democrats would like to see the funds put to better, more practical use, with long-term benefits for rough sleepers and other city residents."
  • Alexander Clifton-Melhuish
    Article: Apr 4, 2018
    By Southampton Liberal Democrats

    Labour-run Southampton City Council is failing on recycling rates, says Freemantle campaigner Alexander Clifton-Melhuish.

    The City Council has been ranked 321 out of 350 local authorities in terms of recycling rates - putting us in the bottom 10% of the country.

    The independent report finds that the city only recycles 28% of our waste. In contrast, Liberal Democrat-run Eastleigh Borough Council sends more than 40% of its household waste for recycling.

    Freemantle campaigner Alexander Clifton-Melhuish

    "I've spoken to many residents who are frustrated by the lack of action and effort from the council on this issue. People are increasingly aware of the impact of our lifestyles on the environment, and wish their council would allow them to recycle more of their waste.

    "As part of our efforts to improve recycling levels in the city, Southampton Liberal Democrats have committed to introduce a food waste collection service in our fully-costed Alternative Budget for the city.

    "Successive Conservative and Labour administrations have failed to improve our recycling levels, and they should be embarrassed when they see the Lib Dems next door in Eastleigh doing so much better than they are."

  • Article: Apr 3, 2018
    By Southampton Liberal Democrats

  • Diamond posters with text 'Liberal Democrats: Open, Tolerant and United
    Article: Mar 29, 2018

    We're launching the BIGGEST most AMBITIOUS campaign the Liberal Democrats have ever run outside an election.


    Quite simply, we want to stop Brexit.

    And why now?

    Well, it's a year since Theresa May's calamitous government triggered 'Article 50', formally starting the process for the UK to leave the EU.

    A UK torn apart from its closest friends and neighbours is not a future we want and not a future we are going to stand by and let happen.

  • Southampton Liberal Democrats outside Guild Hall
    Article: Mar 28, 2018
    By Southampton Liberal Democrats

    Our fully-costed 'People's Budget' for Southampton would let us fix more roads, expand our cycleways, boost Youth Services, adopt homelessness initiatives, and improve our air quality - for less than Labour's 5.99% council tax hike.

    You can download and read our Alternative Budget here.

    Portswood Honorary Alderman Adrian Vinson said: "Labour's budget is yet again conservative and relies on an excessive Council Tax increase. The Conservatives are once again unable to offer a realistic, properly costed budget, while their Government continues to pass the buck to local councils."

  • Adrian Ford on his bike in Portswood
    Article: Mar 22, 2018
    By Southampton Liberal Democrats

    Adrian Ford, Portswood campaigner and Transport Spokesperson for Southampton Liberal Democrats, comments on the Liberal Democrat 'Alternative Budget', presented to Southampton City Council in February, in which we pledge to spend an extra three quarters of a million pounds on improving and extending the city's network of cycleways:

    "I have personally committed in the past to securing more investment for Southampton's cycle network, and we've been able to fulfill that promise with our 'People's Budget'."

    "By accelerating savings and cancelling a vanity IT project, Southampton Liberal Democrats were able to find additional funds to spend on things that will have a clear beneficial impact on the citizens of Southampton, including our cycle network."

    "Cycling is an excellent form of exercise, a wonderful hobby, and has the bonus effect of reducing the amount of vehicle journeys, and therefore harmful emmissions, when people cycle instead of using their car."

    "I'm proud that my party are working hard to support cycling initiatives in Southampton."

  • Simon Stokes
    Article: Mar 21, 2018
    By Southampton Liberal Democrats

    Local campaigner Simon Stokes has welcomed proposals that could see new affordable homes being build in Redbridge and Coxford.

    The proposals, which are due to be discussed by Councillors today, would see the council selling off Brownhill House in Redbridge ward, as well as three additional sites in Coxford.

    Simon Stokes, Housing Spokesperson for Southampton Liberal Democrats and Redbridge campaigner and resident, said of the proposals:

    "Whilst it may be regrettable that the Brownhill House care home was forced to close, I don't want to see the site derelict."

    "It is clear that Southampton needs to build more homes, especially so-called 'affordable homes'. According to the council's own figures, completion of 'affordable homes' has dropped drastically in recent years, from more than 400 in 2014/15 to just 33 in 2017/18."

    "When Labour cancelled their ill-considered 'estate regeneration plan' for Rebdridge, Maybush and Millbrook, and diverted funds to other areas of the city, I was concerned that the housing needs of residents here would be forgotten."

    "I'm glad to see the City Council is finally finding solutions to our affordable housing shortage, after years of inaction."