Four main political parties field candidates for Llangewydd and Brynhyfryd by …

All four main political parties will field candidates in a by- election following the death of a borough councillor.

Former Llangewydd and Brynhyfryd representative Malcolm Francis died suddenly after a heart attack in February.

Mr Francis, 74, a retired former hospital engineering supervisor, who was elected in May last year,  was described as a “real gentleman” after his death.

The by-election will take place on May 2 to fill the vacant seat.

Hoping to follow in the footsteps of Coun Francis are Labour’s Charles Smith, Lib Dem Tony Berrow, Plaid Cymru’s Siân Davies, Tory Clare Lewis and independent Eric Hughes.

Labour’s candidate Dr Charles Smith is an academic and semi-retired lecturer at Swansea Metropolitan University.

Dr Smith, who has lived in the ward for 37 years, has also taught at comprehensive schools in Porthcawl and Bridgend. The former Laleston community councillor said he plans to fight for funding for a facelift to shops on Llangewydd Road and better parking in the area.

He said: “I am honoured to be selected by Labour to defend this ward, to which the late Malcolm Francis devoted so much time and service over many years.”

Conservative Clare Lewis, who was mayor of Bridgend in 2010, said she will be campaigning for speeding restrictions on Merlin Crescent and Barnes Avenue and improvements to roads and pavements in the ward. She called for tougher enforcement of dog fouling by-laws and the introduction of a free garden waste collections.

Mrs Lewis , whose husband Mervyn is a well known photographer and former councillor, has lived in Llangewydd for the past 30 years.

“I would also like an explanation of the increase in council tax, coupled with an increase in the police precept,” she said. “It is now clear that the ruling Labour group on the council cynically froze council tax last year in the run up to the elections.”

Plaid Cymru’s Siân Davies, 40, a single mum, of Suffolk Place, Porthcawl, campaigned against the removal of services from the Princess of Wales Hospital, Bridgend.

She was also involved in the Yes for Wales campaign to grant the  Welsh Government more powers.

Miss Davies said: “The conversations I have had on the doorsteps indicate that people want something different. Many people are switching off from politics, but I have the passion and determination to make a real difference in Llangewydd and Brynhyfryd.”

Lib Dem candidate Tony Berrow, a governor of Bryntirion and Cefn Glas infant schools, sits on the community council and represents Cefn Glas.

Mr Berrow, who is chairman of the community association, has helped organise an OAPs annual Christmas lunch and annual fireworks display at Bryntirion.

Tony, who recently retired from Tata Steel after 43 years and has two grown up children, said: “The most important factor in any local election is to vote for the person you think will work the hardest for you. Everyone living in the Llangewydd and Brynhyfryd ward can count on me to continue to work diligently on their behalf.”

Article source: