I am extraordinarily proud and delighted to be able to announce that on 14 October 2017, Labour Party members in Kursaal ward voted to select me as their candidate for Kursaal ward, in the 2018 Southend-on-Sea local elections.
On Thursday 5th May 2016, the people of Blenheim Park did not choose to make me their new councillor. This is, of course, a disappointment. However, it is hard to remain disappointed given the increased numbers of them who chose to put their faith in this Labour candidate.
My share of the vote was up a staggering 7.5% on the election in 2015, putting me into second place, and making Labour the clear alternative to the Conservatives in 2018. In light of this, and the continuing woeful performance of the Conservative government, Blenheim Park should be a likely Labour gain the next time around.
But as well as the result, I am delighted with the campaign. I would guess that of all the candidates I spoke to the most residents, heard the most issues and personal stories, and had the most individual connections. I won’t let those connections fall by the wayside, and in the coming week I will be picking up the bits of casework which residents raised to me.
The campaigning, for a little while at least, will go back in the box, but I sincerely hope that I have more doors to knock in Blenheim Park ahead of me.
Today is election day across Southend, and if you have a vote then I implore you to use it for Labour.
If you live in Blenheim Park ward, then I ask you to use it for me.
Over the last year, I have been speaking to residents, keeping them informed via regular newsletters, and working hard to resolve the local problems and issues that they have raised to me. Whether I am elected or not, I intended to keep doing this — but it would be a lot easier as your councillor.
Working alongside a passionate and committed group of Labour councillors, I would work to deliver the policies outlined in our local manifesto, whilst making sure that the views of Blenheim Park residents were always heard and considered.
I want this ward, and this town, to be a better place to work and live. I believe that we can do this together.
Please vote Matt Dent for Blenheim Park ward, today.
With the local elections only a month and a day away, I have today received official notification from Southend-on-Sea Borough Council that my nomination has been accepted as the Labour Party candidate for Blenheim Park ward.
We enter, then, the final stage of what has for Labour been a year-long campaign. In Blenheim Park I have been knocking on doors, speaking to residents, and delivering newsletters all year. I’ve yet to see anything of the other political parties, but I am sure they will be rolling out their only-at-election-time campaigns before long.
For my campaign, it’s very much business as usual: speaking to residents, finding out what matters to them, and explaining to them how a vote for me on 5th May is a vote for a better Blenheim Park. But we’re in the final stretch now.
In what has to be one of the worst kept secrets in Southend local politics, I am truly delighted to announce that Labour Party members in Blenheim Park ward have re-selected me to be their candidate for the 2016 local elections in Southend.
Apparently those members didn’t grow entirely sick of me throughout the 2015 campaign, so I will redouble my efforts with even more emails about campaign days, fundraising events, and requests for new additions to my seasoned network of leafleters.
I won’t dwell on my campaign plans, as they will emerge in good time, but I will say that whilst I am pleased with how the last campaign went, I am very definitely aiming for victory this time. As the Conservative government looks to inflict more cuts on Southend, the people of Blenheim Park desperately need a strong voice to stand up from them. They have not found this in the Liberal Democrats, Conservatives or UKIP.
My aim is to be that voice for Blenheim Park.