Green Party candidate elected to council following by-election win

Phil Neve

Phil Neve (centre) won the by-election. - Credit: North Somerset Green Party

A Green Party councillor has been elected to North Somerset Council. 

Phil Neve, Green Party candidate for Congresbury and Puxton, was elected with more than 64 per cent of the vote at the by-election held yesterday (Thursday) at the Old School Rooms.

Samantha Pepperall of the Conservative Party received 270 votes, 29 per cent of the turnout, while the Labour Party's Dawn Parry received six per cent of the votes.

The total number of votes cast was 922, with a turnout or 29.5 per cent.

The by-election was triggered after the resignation of Liberal Democrat councillor Stuart Treadaway after two years in the post.

Mr Neve told the Mercury and Times: "I am delighted that the voters of Congresbury and Puxton have placed their faith in me. I look forward to working within the community, listening to residents and acting on their behalf.

"I want to see an end to unsuitable speculative housing developments that also add more commuter traffic.

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"I will work for better public and active transport options, improved leisure and sports facilities for all, and especially more services and opportunities for young people who are often poorly served in more rural areas."

Congresbury and Puxton is unusual in having 33 years of being green. Richard Lawson was one of the first Green Party councillors in the UK in 1986 and Tom Leimdorfer carried on an unbroken tradition of a green councillor in the village until he stepped down in 2019.

A rainbow administration runs North Somerset Council after the Conservatives lost control in 2019. It comprises a coalition of Independents, Lib Dems, Labour and Greens.

Mr Neve joins three other Green Party councillors in the administration.

He added: "I am a committed environmentalist and one immediate concern is the Bristol Airport expansion inquiry. I live close to the airport flight paths and like many others suffer the immediate impacts of noise, air pollution, traffic and illegal parking airport expansion.

"Further expansion will cause even more nuisances, road congestion, loss of green belt and carbon emissions for very little local benefit. It is ridiculous for Bristol Airport to make net zero claims and yet to ignore the impact of flights and parking

“Turnout was low due to the heatwave, and I’d like to thank all those who did vote for turning out. Unfortunately we will have to get used to these extreme weather conditions fuelled by rising CO2.

"The Green Party is committed to championing a fair transition to a zero-carbon future.”

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