Saturday, July 20, 2024

UK Independence Party candidate for Newbury

Gary Edward Johnson, 72, is standing as the UKIP candidate for Newbury.  He is now retired – but was once the Lib Dem mayor of Thatcham.

1:   What made you run for office?

I have always been interested with what my constituents’ concerns are. As a passed Thatcham Town councillor it could be a broken fence, unclear street signs, disturbing neighbours or something that requires support.
As a party member for the UK Independence Party and like many others I have become disillusioned with the way our Government has performed over the many years. Fractured and broken our identity as a great nation has long gone and the silent majority now has the opportunity to vote for change. It’s my intention to speak up for those that complain how our nation performs or not performing in way they were elected.

2:  Do you have family/partner and what do they think of you running for Parliament?

I have a wonderful wife that understands my political interests. I am pleased to say my wife never interferes with my decision to work with those that I support. Her decision to keep her political thoughts private I fully understand.

3:  When did your interest in politics take hold?

I have always as a young 16 year old had a political interest with politics. The common market by joining Europe back in the sixties I was dead against joining and also the war in Vietnam. I understood the need for the peace women to demonstrate at Greenham common for the removal of the cruise missiles based there.
My interest in politics began significantly when Nigel Farage stood in the council of the European Union and said unquestionably that Britain will one day leave the union, and we did.

4: Why do you think people will vote for you/your party?

I really hope that people understand that people come first before politics. A brownfield site became of interest for a housing estate for two hundred houses locally to where I live. The West Berkshire District council decision to go ahead with these plans upset the local community. Yes houses were needed like they are today but this location was the wrong site. So an action group was formed and as I was chosen to lead the campaign, which lasted four years, TV, Radio and Press could see we were serious. We won the campaign and today the Pound Lane flower meadow has become a place of reflection, relaxation and tranquility for many.
Having championed this project I decided to stand in the local election for Thatcham West. It was my honour to be elected and serve the community. This period from 2010 to 2015 saw my position on the council as a councillor that would get things done by taking part in every meeting held. My reward was to become Mayor in 2014 and this opened a new world for me to help, support the many failing or interests that people had.

5:  Beating the campaign trail means you are speaking to people on the doorstep.  What are they saying to you?

My decision to leave the Lib Dem Party in 2015 and join UKIP is well publicised in that week’s Newbury Weekly News paper. A fresh beginning so when it became time for an election which I stood as a UKIP candidate I found then people were very disillusioned on how any party had the right policies.
Today I find standing and chatting with the public on the doorstep very upsetting. They explain they have become more reliant on food banks, in debt with rent and mortgages. The elderly are in despair with the pensions they receive, the lowest in Europe some say. Health care and the time to wait and see a doctor and most of wrapping this up in one bundle the cost of living.
They dislike the Conservatives, are very concerned with a possible Labour government. The Lib Dem’s too wishie washie with now direction. The Greens seem to be good with environmental issues and the newbie Reform who are they. So you can see why I want to stand and be outspoken and represent those that continue to be disappointed with the way our nation is seen.

6:   What does a vote for you mean?

UKIP known today as the United Kingdom Independence Party has been a political force for thirty years with policies many other parties have used. The success of leaving the European Union Brexit gave the impression that Ukip is now no longer required, leaving euros being independent job done. We know that’s not the case far from being job done we have broken borders which allow in illegal migrants. A Health service unfunded, crime levels, and so much more I could write a book.
So a vote for me is a vote from anyone who thinks our government is not fit for purpose. I intend to be their voice. My record of life I hope people are aware I do care.