Josh Fenton Glynn

Josh Fenton-Glynn (Labour)

Vanessa Lee

Vanessa Lee

Jim McNeill
Social Democratic Party

HebWeb home page

General Election July 2024

About the candidates

Jim McNeill - SDP
Do you remember the Social Democratic Party? It is usually abbreviated to the SDP. It started in 1981 and was reborn in 2018.

It is a party that believes it is okay to be a proud British citizen and that it is okay to govern our own country.

It is a party that believes that we do not have to sell our industries and services to other countries or the private sector.

A classic case would be the water industry. The profits of this previously taxpayer owned industry now go to private shareholders.This means there is less money available to invest in keeping our rivers and seas free of sewage. And with a fast growing population this problem is only going to get worse.

Another case is the railway system. This has been partially privatised in a very complex manner and is still dependent on subsidies from the taxpayer. The SDP would gradually take the railways back into taxpayer ownership and simplify the ticketing system for all to use. We would also support the manufacture of rolling stock in this country, thereby creating jobs and preserving skills.

The SDP would like to support joined up thinking. Why, with an increasing population, are we covering farmland with solar panels when we could use the roofs of houses,offices and factories? It is imperative that we reserve good farmland so that we can be more self-sufficient in food production.

The SDP believes that the state should get involved in house building. This is to ensure houses are built in the right place (not on the green belt) and of the right size to suit the ordinary family. Such a house would be for rent initially, but could be sold to the residents provided the profit was used to build another house for rent.

The SDP believes that a life on benefits is not sustainable either personally or financially for the taxpayer. Therefore the state should provide work for the unemployed at minimum wage in the local community to ensure human talents are not lost, and the taxpayer receives a return.

The SDP intends to stop mass immigration. There are currently nearly a million people coming into the country every year. This cannot be sustained. We cannot provide housing,or prompt healthcare to citizens as it is. Therefore immigration should be restricted to less than 50,000 people a year to allow entry only for skilled individuals such as surgeons or for immediate family reunification.

We need to train our own skilled professionals, rather than importing them. For instance we have many well qualified people who could train to become doctors and nurses. It cannot be right to poach medical staff from much poorer countries. The same principles apply to other skilled occupations.

I hope you can see how SDP intends to build a country of productive citizens. Only by doing this can we help other less fortunate nations.

Donal O'Hanlon (Liberal Democrat)
In the Upper Valley, a smallholding is home to a dedicated individual with a rich background in public service and a passion for community.

For 25 years, this has been the shared life of Jo and their spouse Donal, a former Borough Councillor from Prestwich. Eight years ago, they relocated to Todmorden, embracing the vibrant community and picturesque landscapes.

Donal's professional journey is rooted in the meticulous world of risk engineering. With a career spanning insurance underwriting, health and safety, property construction, fire and security protection, and business continuity. This work has provided opportunities to work all over Europe with an array of public sector entities, housing projects, and large commercial organizations.

Beyond professional commitments, Donal leads a life enriched by hobbies and community involvement. Their smallholding is bustling with sheep, horses, and cats, demanding considerable care and attention. Sporting activities like five-a-side football and gym sessions add a dynamic element to their routine. Additionally, they find joy in jogging or hiking across the moors and are avid supporters of live music, frequenting local venues such as the Polished Knob and Burnley Mechanics.

Driven by a desire to address widespread dissatisfaction with the major political parties Donal has stepped forward as a candidate. He recognizes the frustration many feel towards the Conservatives and Labour, particularly the choice between Rishi Sunak and Keir Starmer.

Donal believes that the people of Calder Valley deserve a reasonable alternative, someone who can represent their concerns and advocate for change. His commitment to the Liberal Democrats stems from a belief in the party's democratic policy-making process, which involves all members rather than being dictated by leaders who ignore the wishes of their members. As such, the party has a range of progressive policies, created democratically by its members including reforming our broken political system.

Donal underscores the Liberal Democrats' promise of sound economic judgement coupled with fairness and compassion. Reflecting on the coalition government experience of 2010, he highlights the valuable lessons learned from past mistakes, positioning the party as a wiser and more effective choice today. In a political landscape often marred by over-promising and under-delivering, the Donal assures voters of a balanced and reliable approach.

As the election draws near, the residents of Calder Valley are presented with a candidate who combines professional expertise, community engagement, and a clear vision for a better future. The promise of sensible, democratically crafted policies and a commitment to genuine representation offers a refreshing alternative in a time of political disillusionment.

Donal is campaigning to turn the underutilised Todmorden Health Centre site into an Urgent Treatment Centre which would treat urgent non-life-threatening problems. This would be of major benefit to everyone living in and around Hebden Bridge.

Vanessa Lee - Conservative

The following was sent to the HebWeb by Vanessa Lee's agent:

Vanessa LeeVanessa Lee is standing as your Local MP in the Calder Valley because she lives in the area and cares about the community. What affects you and your family, affects her too.

"I was drawn to the beauty of the Calder Valley twenty years ago and have remained here since. I love it here, and I see it as home. I want to champion investment in our local services, be there for fellow residents and support our stunning rural economy.'' said Vanessa.
Vanessa is not a career politician, but has a strong understanding of supporting businesses and takes immense pride in helping people achieve their ambitions.

Like many other people, Vanessa wants to make a genuine difference for her community. She wants to be a local MP that represents the community, who understands your priorities, and delivers.  She firmly believes that we should all give back if we can – be that through voluntary roles or fundraising for local charities.

Vanessa has a decisive plan for the Calder Valley and will:

  • Fight to secure even more funding for our Local NHS Trust. The Conservative Government has helped to free up GP appointments via Pharmacy First and is investing £197m in the local Trust. This will deliver a new community diagnostic centre, a new A&E, more Wards, and much needed parking at Calderdale Royal Hospital.  
  • Protect local services. Having secured the soon to open Banking Hub in Elland, alongside your local Conservative Councillors, Vanessa campaigned against the closure of Elland Tip. Labour-run Calderdale Council have listened to these demands and postponed this decision until next year. The proposal to close this tip whilst building 3,255 houses in the Lower Valley would result in more traffic and pollution. Locally and nationally, Vanessa will continue this fight to protect your public services.
  • Protect our green spaces. It is unacceptable that Labour-run Calderdale Council plans to build more than 10,000 properties on our green belt when there are abundant Brownfield sites available in Calderdale. Vanessa will fight for our farmers and to ensure that Brownfield sites are prioritised for housing. Furthermore, she is determined that we should receive even more funding for infrastructure such as roads, schools and GP surgeries.
  • Push for even more investment in the Calder Valley. The Conservative Government is investing £42.9m to improve Brighouse, Todmorden and Elland Town centres. Work has started on £19m flood-alleviation defences in the Lower Valley which is in addition to the £128m of works already completed in Mytholmroyd and Hebden Bridge. This funding from the Conservatives will improve our Highstreets and protect our homes, businesses, and environment from future floods.

Josh Fenton-Glynn (Labour)Josh Fenton Glynn

Josh Fenton-Glynn was the Labour candidate for the Calder Valley constituency in the 2015, 2017 and 2019 general elections. He was beaten each time by Conservative Craig Whittaker.

Josh has yet to reply to the HebWeb for this page, but on his website, he writes the following:

I am standing to be Labour's candidate for Calder Valley in the next General Election – and I need your support.

I am a Calderdale councillor, cabinet member and I have lived at both ends of our constituency.

I've been campaigning with Labour across all areas of Calder Valley for years, speaking with thousands of residents and working to address their concerns. I've built a reputation as a grafter who can make a difference.

I have worked with others to make change, as a trade unionist, as an activist and in my professional life and I want to take that work ethic to Westminster to make our community better for everyone.

If you are a Labour party member, please support me in the selection to become your candidate and our next Labour MP.

Kieran Turner (Green)

Kieran Turner stood unsuccessfully for the Greens in this constituency in the general election of 2017. The Calderdale Green Party website says the following about Kieran Turner:

A long-term activist on Green issues, Kieran stood for the Green Party in the snap General Election in 2017. During the campaign he was impressed by the unselfishness of the topics raised by residents on the doorstep. He strongly feels that the best way to take forward the social and environmental issues that matter in Todmorden is to have a Green voice in Calderdale Council.

There is an urgent need to shake up local administration and introduce politics that listen, and respond to local residents. Local authorities need to move towards protecting, conserving, and improving our local assets, working together with the creativity and energy of the community, putting people first. They must use their resources to support such groups and local initiatives, and stop struggling to provide services that are all too often dictated by the commercial demands of large, national property developers and other commercial interests.

An important example in the Calder Valley is the amount spent on flood defence work. Whilst vital, this expenditure will never end while planning consent continues to be given to ill-advised swathes of concrete and poorly-sited new housing developments. Green Party examination of the local plan has revealed a tremendous amount of blighted brownfield wasteland that could be put to attractive and practical uses, which is ignored by property developers because it does not suit their greedy economies of scale.

James Vasey - Yorkshire Party

The following is from James Vasey's web page:

Welcome, I'm James, a education data-geek, a student, a rail-enthusiast and Chairman of Clayton Parish Council, but not always in that order.

In my day-job I produce pretty graphs, tables and charts to wave at teachers and students and occasionally teach economics. In my other roles, I campaign to improve rail services (and get stations built) and try to improve the lives of people of Clayton through investment in local services.

Donald Walmsley - Reform Party

The following is from Donald Walmsley web page

I am a true Yorkshire lad and proud to be so. I was born in Hipperholme and lived there until leaving for university at age 19. My Grandad established the famous Kendall's Ice-cream factory almost 100 years ago and this family business was managed by my father, Kenneth, until his retirement in 1989.   I have many friends & family still living in the Calder Valley and visit regularly. Calder Valley is a complete fit for me: home is where the heart is! Yorkshire roots and connections are so strong that I married my wife, Sandra, at Halifax registry office in 2019 and had the reception at The Shibden Mill Inn!

For some time, I have been frustrated and dismayed by the lack of conviction by our current political leaders who are full of empty promises which are completely devoid of any meaningful action. I firmly believe that Reform UK will not only give commitments that make absolute sense, from social and economic points of view, but will absolutely deliver on these promises.

I stand before you now as a passionate advocate for Reform UK, a party dedicated to revitalizing our nation with a clear focus on education, science, and common sense. These pillars are not just the foundation of our policy but are essential for the future prosperity of our country.

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