Over the next few weeks I will gradually release sections of my manifesto, prior to complete publication and distribution to every household, during the official election campaign period in September.
The joint Liberal Vannin manifesto statement common to all candidates, will concentrate on the key themes: Jobs; Fairness; Open Government; Freedom.
My personal manifesto will include my thoughts on the following topics:
· Health & Social Care—Manx Care
· Climate Change—A Green New Deal
· School and College
· Housing—Nests and Nest Eggs
· On-Island Transport
· Ferry & Air Links
· Social Issues
· Government Reform
This week though, I am providing information on my background in explanation of why I am standing. It also gives those of you who don’t know me, or don’t know me very well, some of my history.
Born near Durham, England, I have been interested and involved in politics since I was at school in Hartlepool. I joined what was then the Liberal Party, in the UK in the mid-1970s.
I was their candidate for Harborough in the 1979 General Election, and election agent in Rugby and Kenilworth in 1983. At that time, I was also a town councillor for Kenilworth, Warwickshire.
After moving to Scotland, I became a senior officer in local government in Renfrewshire and then Argyll & Bute. I have experience in working with elected politicians and officers across departments, in preparing budgets, advising on policy decisions and delivering projects, on time and on budget.
My home is now in Ballaugh, and I have lived on the Island since 1997, working at King William’s College, the International Business School at the Nunnery, Milntown, and Manx National Heritage, before retiring in 2016. At MNH, I helped develop their iMuseum service. I am now an occasional volunteer for the Manx Wildlife Trust.
I have some business experience from running a small printing company in Kenilworth, running a B&B with my wife in France, and as a sole trader in IT, on the Island.
As Chair of Liberal Vannin during the last year, I have worked with my fellow members on our Executive Committee, to develop party policy and support our Party Leader, Lawrie Hooper, MHK for Ramsey, (2016-21).
We have held meetings and campaigned on this year’s government budget, housing, the Area Plan for the North & West, animal welfare, education, drugs reform, and many other issues.
Once you have seen my manifesto, I hope that you will consider giving me your vote on September 23rd, to represent your interests in the House of Keys, as your MHK for Ayre & Michael.