I started thinking about next year’s local elections after wrapping up coverage of the recent Assembly election. I wasn’t sure when candidates would be announced so I’ve just been keeping an eye on the party groups’ Twitter accounts for any news.
The first candidate I spotted was Jen Davies, who posted a photo of Llandaff North and had, “Labour Council Candidate for Llandaff North” in her profile. I contacted her and she confirmed she was standing with current councillor Dilwar Ali. This kicked off the process of tracking down the other candidates. There were 97 candidates in 2012 so this may take a while.
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In previous elections I’ve attended hustings, published profiles and shared campaign leaflets. This will be hard to repeat with the increased number of candidates so I need to think how I can make the process more efficient and ensure the coverage is fair.
With a small number of candidates I was able to build up a relationship with them and they were happy to send me information. I can foresee some candidates not responding if they don’t know the site or don’t see any benefit in engaging with it. I’m hoping to get in touch with local party staff who can encourage them to get involved.
The other issue I can see is members of smaller parties or independent candidates that don’t know about this site or don’t have an online presence.
This is where I need help from readers to share the site and help it get noticed on social media. If you support what we do and would like to be involved, please get in touch.
The most important thing for me is to find out who the candidates are and make this information available to as many people as possible. The next challenge is to find out more about them and why they think they should get your vote.
I’m going to create an online questionnaire for each candidate to complete, which will be published on dedicated candidate pages.
Do you have any suggestions for questions to ask the candidates?