My, yesterday was a busy day. I’d meant to write this blog entry yesterday, but honestly by the time I got back from Wokingham Borough Civic Offices I was so tired we just went straight to bed.
But now I’m awake, and coffee-ed, so it’s time to get to the keyboard. Firstly, graduation went brilliantly. I am now Matthew Stephen Dent LLB, after finishing three years of study at the University of Sussex with a 2:1 in Law, and a hug from Sanjeev Bhaskar. Seriously, there’s video evidence:
Congratulations to all Sussex graduates, particularly my fellow lawyers. Everyone has worked extremely hard, and I wish you all the very best in your futures, wherever they take you.
Secondly was, of course, the Remenham, Wargrave and Ruscombe by-election, about which I’ve been harping on for months now. Yesterday was polling day, and saw me down at Woodcliffe Hall to vote before heading off down to Brighton. It’s been a great campaign, which has seen me have the opportunity to talk to all sorts of people. I loved every moment of it, and last night was the moment it call came to a head:
HALSALL, John (CON) – 850 votes (65.5%)
ALDER, Martin (LIB) – 272 votes (20.9%)
DENT, Matthew Stephen (LAB) – 94 votes (7.2%)
HEAPE, Andy (UKIP) – 55 votes (4.2%)
FOSS, Martyn (GREEN) – 19 votes (1.5%)
So I got third place, and just over 7% of the vote, which is a fairly big improvement on Labour’s previous showings in the ward. Apparently the Lib Dems were a bit surprised at that, though Cllr Keith Baker claimed he’d expected an improved showing thanks to me (isn’t he sweet?).
I’m pleased with that. I beat UKIP, in what could be considered prime territory for them, and gained some ground on the Lib Dems. The seat is up for election again next May, so I’m hoping to use this result as a springboard to move forward off then, as part of a concentrated Labour attack on the four wards within Twyford and District Branch Labour Party’s purview where there will be elections (Remenham Wargrave & Ruscombe, Twyford, Charvil and Hurst).
So thanks to everyone who offered support, helped me out with the campaign, and above all voted for me. I hope to see much more progress in the years to come, and thank you for joining me on this first step.