Three candidates to go head-to-head for Octavia Hill ward seat in Wisbech by-election

Octavia Hill candidates Phil King, Myles Salamon and Susan Marshall.

Octavia Hill candidates Phil King, Myles Salamon and Susan Marshall. - Credit: Archant

With mayoralty and Cambridgeshire County Council election jousting well under way, you forgive those who may have forgotten that a by-election is to take place in Wisbech next month.

But that’s exactly what will take place on May 4 when three candidates go head-to-head for the Octavia Hill ward seat, left vacant following the resignation of Conservative Councillor Stephen Brunton last month.

Cllr Brunton was elected in 2015 but left his Railway Road home in the town and moved to Lincolnshire last year.

He said last year he had considered resigning earlier but decided against it as he believed a by-election, costing £7,000, would not be “a good use of town reserves.”

The candidates are:

• Myles Salamon – Independent

“I want Wisbech to prosper,” is the message from independent candidate, Myles Salamon.

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The former Royal Army Medical Corps soldier was born in Wisbech and says he will “give something back to the community” if he gains a seat on the town council.

One of his main aims is to demand greater opportunities for young people in the area, allowing them to learn “vital skills which will equip them for adult life and the challenges of the 21st century workplace”.

He also plans on holding Roddons Housing Association to account, and wants to prevent Wisbech Castle from being sold.

He claims he will “bring foresight and common sense” to the “fiasco” that is traffic in the Market Place, as well as cracking down on anti-social behaviour, which he believes is “out of control”.

Supported by the Wisbech Voices group, Myles vows to improve transport infrastructure and employment opportunities and says if the town wants a local councillor who isn’t “invisible,” it should vote for him on May 4.

• Phil Wing – Conservative

Phil Wing survived a heart attack - and wants to make the most of his new lease of life by making a difference in Wisbech.

A self-proclaimed “fighter,” Phil has lived in Wisbech all his life and has experience of graft thanks to a stint with the Metropolitan Police as a forensics and fingerprint expert.

Similar to his Independent adversary, Phil has no experience in local government but says his wealth of “unusual skills and experience” makes him the top candidate on election day.

Quite simply, Phil says he is a “local voice for local people” and believes his energy and tenacity makes him worthy of a seat at Wisbech Town Council.

• Susan Marshall – Labour

Susan Marshall is no stranger to local government.

A former County Council auditor and chairman of the Cambridgeshire Labour Party, Susan says she is fed up with Wisbech and Fenland getting overlooked when it comes to funding.

Unlike the other candidates, Susan hasn’t lived in the town all her life - only for 17 years - but says she will be a “strong advocate” for the town and vows to ensure that the town’s issues are heard at Shire Hall.

She also has experience in fighting local causes, championing a campaign to retain outpatients services at North Cambs Hospital and was part of a ‘bridges, not walls’ protest at Freedom Bridge to coincide with the inauguration of President Donald Trump in January.

Susan says she will fight for a better deal for all residents and businesses in Wisbech if she is voted in on May 4.