In this episode of the Sound Vault: Voices podcast, the chief reporter of the Farnham Herald, Daniel Gee captures the atmosphere at the count for a local council by-election.
On Thursday 24th May, 2018, by-elections took place simultaneously for the Farnham Castle ward on Farnham Town Council, and Waverley Borough Council. The seats had been resigned by the group leader of the Farnham Residents party, John Williamson, after he moved away from the area.
In this podcast, Daniel captures the atmosphere of what is not a standard election count, with it taking place in a less formal venue than usual (at Potters Gate School, late into the night), with one of the successful elected councillors facing re-election in only a year, when borough-wide elections will be upon us anyway.
As well as Daniel, featuring in the podcast are Tom Horwood (Waverley Borough Council’s Chief Executive, and Returning Officer for the elections); the winning councillors, each from the Farnham Residents party – George Hesse (town council) and David Beaman (borough council); the candidate who ran them a close second in each seat, Jo Aylwin (Liberal Democrat); and Rashida Nasir who trailed in third place in both seats for the Conservatives – as well as Jerry Hyman, the leader of the Farnham Residents.
Daniel’s podcast captures a sound portrait of what it is like to cover the local political scene as a chief reporter on a local paper, and some of the atmosphere as the politicians gather in a local school to await their fate, and hear the declarations.
You can read the report of the result in the Farnham Herald here.
The full results for each of the elections were as follows:
Farnham Castle – Waverley Borough Council by-election:
Jo Aylwin (Lib Dem): 338 votes
Rashida Nasir (Conservative): 175 votes
Rebecca Kaye (Labour): 42 votes
Mark Westcott (Independent): 26 votes
Farnham Castle – Farnham Town Council by-election:
Jo Aylwin (Lib Dem): 339 votes
Rashida Nasir (Conservative): 164 votes
Rebecca Kaye (Labour): 41 votes.