Christchurch Borough Council elections: No Lib Dem candidates

The Liberal Democrats are not fielding any candidates in a borough election despite 11 standing four years ago.

One Lib Dem councillor was elected to Christchurch Borough Council in 2011, but he defected to the Conservative group.

The council is made up of 22 Conservatives and two Independents.

Lib Dem constituency candidate Andy Canning said the local party "wanted to concentrate on the general election campaign".

Of the 69 candidates standing in the Christchurch borough election, across 11 wards, 24 are Conservatives, 20 are Labour, 16 are from the UK Independence Party (UKIP), six are from the Green Party, and three are Independents.

A spokeswoman for the Christchurch Conservative group said her group had been getting very good support but added it was not for her to speculate about why the Lib Dems had not put any candidates forward.

The Christchurch Labour group said the Lib Dems' share of the vote at the last local elections in 2011 was "significant".

A spokesman said it would be "a very interesting fight here in Christchurch" with a "strong possibility" of Labour councillors being elected.

Janet Dover, Lib Dem group leader at Dorset County Council, said she was "disappointed" but had not been involved in the recruitment process in Christchurch.

The candidates for the Christchurch Parliamentary constituency are:

  • Andy Canning (Liberal Democrats)
  • Andrew Satherley (Labour)
  • Christopher Chope (Conservative)
  • Shona Dunn (Green)
  • Robin Grey (UKIP)

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