Our West Lancashire - the independent political party which claims it's gathering support from locals disaffected by 'big' County Council politics - has two candidates in the forthcoming May elections.

The first is Ian Davis, who calls himself a proud Lancastrian born and bred. He's lived in Westhead for the past ten years - where he's trustee and treasurer of the newly-constituted Westhead Village Hall - and is married to Tish, with three daughters and two grandchildren.

A qualified accountant and company secretary by profession, Ian has managed major engineering contracts worldwide and was for 20 years both the financial and latterly MD of a major engineering listed PLC.

Now partly retired, Ian acts as a consultant on taxation, financial accountancy and cost reduction management for clients in his own practice.

Ian is standing for election because he believes that West Lancashire is poorly served by the county council at present. For example, our roads are the worst in the county and, more generally, investment is concentrated in other parts of Lancashire; re-electing the same old faces as county councillors in West Lancashire will not change that and we will continue to be taken for granted in Preston.

He and its other candidates are Independent with no party whip leaving him free to represent the interests of the residents in West Lancashire East at all times. He would put his experience in major organisations to use in cutting the costs of running the Council without impacting on the services that matter to residents while championing our local village schools; seeking to improve community transport; and to use wisely the £2.5 million set aside to tackle Ormskirk’s traffic tailbacks.

There is already an Independent Group of councillors at the county council. They were able to secure an extra £3 million in a budget amendment to cushion the effect of the cuts. An Independent councillor chaired the committee that saved many local bus services, including the 3A from Parbold to Burscough and the Ormskirk and Town Green circular services. A larger Independent Group could wield greater influence.

Gordon Johnson is its second County Council candidate. He's lived in West Lancashire for over 25 years and lives in Ormskirk with his wife Jackie and two children. He is a retired police officer and now works as the County FA Welfare Officer for Liverpool County Football Association.

As a recently retired police officer, Gordon is only able now to get involved with local politics having been prohibited from active involvement in politics by police regulations. However, for more than 10 years he was an elected Federation representative acting on behalf of 8000 officers in the force. He is also a Governor at a local sixth form college and feels the current two party bickering leaves residents neglected.

If elected on May 4th, Gordon's first priority will be to press for the completion of the delayed Town Centre Movement Strategy. Some improvements can be made at relatively low cost to improve flows at junctions in the town.

Said Ian and Gordon: "Two party politics is failing us in West Lancashire. Labour and Conservative councillors are complacent and have to toe the party line. Time after time they fail to stand up for their local wards because they have to follow the dictates of their party.

"Whether in Ormskirk, Skelmersdale, Burscough or the villages, residents feel excluded and ignored. The culture of the council needs to change.

"To the big parties, it's all about control of the council. With Our West Lancashire, it's different. We chose the name because what matters are you - the residents and council taxpayers of West Lancashire.

"Our activists and councillors work as independents in loose alliance allowing them to always promote the interests of their area. We agree some core policies each year but beyond that however, we have no party whip.

"Although we only launched in early 2015, we are growing steadily and have many achievements to our name. We won a seat on the council in 2016 and outpolled one of the main parties in Ormskirk. We have influenced the council for the better.
We are a local political party. We take no stance as an organisation in support of any national political party. Our councillors, candidates and activists have supported all the main parties at national level in the past and remain free to do so. Our West Lancashire did not endorse any party in the 2015 general election."