Buttercross, May 22, 2015: Electoral review needed

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Well, there goes another General Election. Votes have been cast and counted for whoever will govern us for the next five years.

Results have been declared, surprises abounded, with some tears then shed for all sorts of reasons. Recriminations have quickly come to the fore as to why the losers lost, either over unpopular policies or perhaps of below par performances on the hustings.

One thing is certain however, and that is that minor parties have now, at least for the time being, become more high profile forces.

Some five million voters put there mark against only two parties’ candidates, and no doubt feel not unnaturally that they should be heard nationally. The fact that only two seats were won by these Parties says much about the fairness of our voting system.

The problem here is pretty obvious, that the party in power is unlikely to support any change to our present first past the post system which served them so well.

We have a democratic system that is the envy of much of the world, but it could, and perhaps should, be fairer.

As far as the election for our own town council is concerned, a call had been going out from many townspeople for new candidates to come forward.

Thankfully we did have five new faces standing but as we had four councillors not seeking re-election as an election it was all rather predictable, with only one candidate being the only unlucky one not to get elected.

Running almost in parallel with the elections was the VE Day celebrations. At the end of the week we had a TV variety show, held on Horseguards Parade, which many of us no doubt thoroughly enjoyed for all sorts of reasons.

To some it brought back memories and no doubt many found it very emotional. But whatever those emotions were it was superbly put together. So much so that it got me, and no doubt others, looking forward to what our town was likely to regale us with. Many people would be out and about, including visitors.

Well, what happened? The answer is unfortunately nothing. Not a peel of bells, not a musical note offered, not a uniform in sight, not a flag out or bunting on display.

What a disappointment it was and how sad that we did not see fit, as a town, to join in these national celebrations. Will it all be any different for VJ Day in August? We will see but I doubt it, with the big one passing us by so quietly.