Conservatives have selected David Lewis to contest a by-election in Oxshott and Stoke d'Abernon ward on 12 July.
It follows the resignation of sitting Conservative councillor, James Vickers, for personal reasons earlier in June. Conservative group leader, Councillor Tim Oliver, paid tribute to James' 26 years of service to Elmbridge Borough Council, including his "remarkable achievement" of raising more than £100,000 for charity during his year as Mayor.
Support is now building behind David Lewis, who has unveiled a six point plan of what he will deliver for the ward if he is elected.
It includes taking a sensible approach to town planning, addressing concerns about traffic congestion and speeding, improving safety at Blundel Lane railway bridge and promoting community spirit with new signage and other initiatives. First and foremost David will be committed to protecting the green belt in Oxshott and Stoke d'Abernon, which had been consulted on for building thousands of houses by the previous Liberal Democrat and Residents Association administration.
David says: "I am committed to protect our precious open spaces. I understand the sensitivity of planning issues and will be a listening councillor, supporting residents in their concerns whilst ensuring decisions are fair and policy compliant. There is a need for more affordable homes in Elmbridge and I will work with the council's new Conservative administration to identify sites where additional properties can be constructed without negatively impacting communities."
David moved to Stoke d’Abernon with his wife and children 30 years ago. He was a senior manager for multi-national oil company until he retired last year, and now has time to devote to the role of councillor as well as practical skills and experience from years in industry.
He adds: "Our children attended the Royal Kent School and, over the years, I have been active in numerous local organisations including the RKS fete committee, the Oxshott Scout Group, the Stoke d’Abernon Residents’ Association and Stoke d’Abernon Charities, of which I am a trustee. I have recently become a Patron of the Walton Firs Activity Centre in Cobham which provides fantastic outdoor opportunities and experiences for young people."
The council is currently tied with 24 Conservatives and 24 seats held by Lib Dem and Residents Association councillors. It is essential that the Conservatives retain Oxshott and Stoke d'Abernon at this election to continue as the council administration and implement our agenda to meet on housing, protecting green belt and open spaces, providing excellent services and keeping costs and council tax as low as possible.
If you can help David's campaign by delivering leaflets, knocking on doors or helping on polling day, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org