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ifF are swamped with new candidates for upcoming election

The whittling down exercise by the panel in full progress

The whittling down exercise by the panel in full progress

Independents for Frome (ifF) have hand selected 17 candidates, each of whom will fight to gain a seat on Frome Town Council in just under 100 days’ time. 

This year’s town council elections will coincide with the General Election, giving voters a chance to have their say at both local and national level on polling day Thursday 7th May.

To make the selection process as fair as possible the group placed an advert in the paper, on Facebook, and on the IfF website asking for prospective candidates to come forward and the response was tremendous.

Over 50 people attended two introductory meetings and 27 people applied for the 17 seats.

Candidates were not asked about political allegiances, what was important was their enthusiasm, what they wanted to achieve, and above all their love of Frome. The six existing town councillors who wanted to carry on went through the very same process to ensure the best choice of candidates.

The demanding whittling down exercise was run by an independent, objective, and diverse panel of five, led by Mary Philips of Bristol University.  In the end the panel has achieved a mixture of experience, new blood, gender, life experiences, age  and length of time living in Frome.

The panel said, “It was a tough decision as all those who applied would have made great councillors.”

Mel Usher, convenor of IfF said, “Whilst elsewhere people struggle to find candidates, and politicians are held in such low esteem that no one wants to stand, here in Frome the IfFs could probably have put up two candidates per seat. The level of enthusiasm, experience and downright joy at getting through to this stage is humbling. I hope the people of Frome like what they see.”

The candidates are as follows: Alison Barclay, Gary Collinson, Richard Ackroyd, Jean Boulton, Kate Bielby, Heather Wride, Sheila Gore, Toby Eliot, Tricia Golinski, Peter Macfadyen, Al O’Kane, Mel Usher, Nick White, Pippa Goldfinger, Tim O’Connor and Cath Puddick.

To register your support for the team or to volunteer please get in touch via the website at