Confrontation encouraged Carla and I to stand

David and Carla Brayshaw.
David and Carla Brayshaw.

I have received much ribbing this week over my defeat at the recent city council elections.

I’m obviously very pleased for Carla and contrary to public belief, we weren’t actually running against each other.

I had decided to stand for city council and so it was the obvious decision to get Carla to stand as my ‘running mate’.

I’m a little bit ashamed to admit that until our confrontations with the local MBI group I’d never really been interested in local or national politics; an attitude shared by many other local people.

It was this confrontation that encouraged Carla and I to take an interest locally, and we took time to learn more about the various councillors and groups which make up the Morecambe and Lancaster councils.

After much deliberation, Carla and I decided that we would pin our colours to the mast of the Labour party; it seemed to us that they were the ones working locally to try to improve Morecambe and this was our aim too, when we decided to bring back the carnival.

One of the first things that I learnt about the local Labour party was that they organised weekly door knocking sessions in at least three different areas every week and had been doing so for over a year. So Saturday morning, 11am, I attended my first door knock in Heysham.

Although I was nervous I soon found that I actually enjoyed it and found it a great opportunity to meet people and hear their views.

I was amazed at how many residents were genuinely pleased to see someone caring enough about the local community to take the time to knock on their door and listen to them.

The local Labour Party had already chosen Amina Lone to stand as their candidate and when I met her in early 2014 I was captivated by her enthusiasm and passion for our town.

She had grand plans for the people and the area and couldn’t wait to share these with me.

I felt that she was the breath of fresh air that Morecambe needed and from that day I decided to back Amina in whatever way I could.

So, as well as doing everything we could to support Amina, Carla and I decided to put our names forward for both Morecambe and Lancaster councils.

We felt that if we could get elected to council we would be in a better position to help Amina implement her plans. However, on the day things didn’t go quite the way we had planned.

Amina didn’t get elected as our MP but Carla and I got onto Morecambe Town Council and Carla also got onto Lancaster City Council, beating me by one vote.

So, to all those people who over the past two years have told me that they’re not going to vote because they cannot make a difference – one vote does matter.

I am now officially known as ‘plus one guest’, a title which I’m not that happy with.