Lib Dem PPC Joins Hundreds at South Molton Christmas Lights

David Worden, Gordon Sparks and Kirsten JohnsonKirsten Johnson, Lib Dem PPC for North Devon, joined a crowd of hundreds to see the Christmas lights being turned on in South Molton on Friday, November 16th.

Kirsten says, “This was a great community event, with a joyful and festive atmosphere. I congratulate South Molton Town Council on putting on such a fantastic display for the town. No doubt the many people who come to shop in South Molton over the Christmas period will enjoy these lovely lights and spend a lot of money in the various delightful shops in the town”.

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North Devon Lib Dem PPC Becomes Chair of National Charity, Fragile X Society

Kirsten JohnsonKirsten Johnson, Lib Dem PPC for North Devon, has become Chair of a national charity, The Fragile X Society.

Fragile X Syndrome is the most common known inherited cause of learning disabilities, affecting around 1 in 4000 males and 1 in 8000 females. It can cause a wide range of difficulties with learning, as well as social, language, attentional, emotional, behavioural and medical problems. In addition, approximately 1 in 250 females and 1 in 600 males are carriers of the Fragile X pre-mutation. Some carriers may develop symptoms of one of the two Fragile X-associated Disorders. Therefore, Fragile X consists of a family of three genetic conditions.  

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Bratton Fleming Community Concerned Over Pub Closure Meet with Lib Dem PPC

Kirsten Johnson and Alan Rennles at the White Hart, Bratton FlemmingKirsten Johnson, North Devon Lib Dem PPC visited Bratton Fleming at the invitation of Bratton Fleming Community Benefit Society Ltd, on Thursday, 8th of November. The meeting was well attended and took place in St Peter’s Church.

Chair of the Bratton Fleming Community Benefit Society (BFCBS), Trevor Hilton, says, "We are pleased to have Kirsten's support in our fight to save The White Hart for our local community in Bratton Fleming."

Kirsten adds "I very much support The White Hart remaining an Asset of Community Value. Local residents have fought hard to stop housing development of this pub, and North Devon Council have refused several applications. I hope this beautiful building can either be re-opened as a pub or a community hub in the near future. Building communities and providing proper facilities combats rural isolation and keeps our local economy strong. I hope North Devon can rally around and support those in Bratton Fleming striving to keep this pub as part of the community. I also sincerely hope that the owner of the White Hart will desist from his current endeavours to keep the pub closed, which so many residents of Bratton Fleming find very disappointing. I share their sentiments”.

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Lib Dems Romp to Victory in Braunton Parish By-Election

Marguerite Shapland with Kirsten JohnsonMarguerite Shapland, a veteran Lib Dem campaigner in Braunton, has won an overwhelming victory in yesterdays by-election for the Parish Council there.

The Lib Dems polled 386 votes, more than double the Labour vote and over four times the Green vote – winning 61% of the vote.

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NDC Lib Dems Call for CAB Support

Cllrs Joy Cann and Caroline Leaver with NDDC Lib Dem leader Cllr David WordenNorth Devon District Councillors, Caroline Leaver and Joy Cann, are to call for continued support from North Devon district (NDC) for the North Devon Citizens Advice Bureau, CAB at the Full Meeting of NDC on November 21st.

Their motion, below, highlights the difficulties people in N Devon are experiencing with the roll out of Universal Credit.

“In the light of the recent report from the Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB) for North Devon into its work over the last six months, this Council re-affirms its support for the CAB and commits to on-going financial support for its work with the most vulnerable in North Devon’s communities, and in particular during the early years of the introduction of Universal Credit in North Devon.”

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Kirsten Johnson Visits Ilfracombe Academy In Campaign to End School Cuts

Kirsten Johnson at Ilfracombe AcadamyKirsten Johnson, Lib Dem Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for North Devon has continued her tour of schools in N Devon, as part of her campaign to end school cuts.

Kirsten says,

“The energy, commitment and dedication of the staff and pupils at Ilfracombe Academy were truly impressive. They are also enjoying the benefits of new buildings and facilities provided by the Coalition administration. Sadly, they are being undermined by the savage cuts to school budgets being administered by this Conservative Government and Conservative Devon County Council. Unlike the current Conservative MP for North Devon, when elected I will do everything in my power to put an end to these short sighted and damaging cuts”

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NDC Liberal Democrats Call For Appledore and Chivenor to Stay

Cllr. David Worden with Lib Dem PPC Kirsten JohnsonCouncillor David Worden, Leader of the Liberal Democrat Group on NDC, seconded by Cllr Ian Roome, are calling on North Devon District Council (NDC) to intervene and call on Government to help secure a future for both Appledore Shipyard and RAF Chivenor. The motion, below, will go before full Council on November 21st.

“This council regards the decision to close Appledore Ship Yard as a hammer blow to the economy of Northern Devon and calls on the Government and Babcock’s to investigate ways to see if this decision can be changed.  Furthermore this council requests that the Government reverses its decision to close RMB Chivenor and instead looks to enhance its capacity by bringing 45 Commando from Scotland and 40 Commando from Norton Manor, Taunton to North Devon.  The closure of both Appledore Ship Yard and RMB Chivenor would have a devastating impact on businesses, schools and public services and this council calls on the Government to face up to their responsibilities toward areas like North Devon where wages are already low and many residents are struggling financially.” 

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Lib Dem PPC Remembers Women’s Land Army at Woolacombe - God Speed The Plough

Kirsten Johnson, with Mary Lethbridge (Organiser) and Margaret Bannister view a flower arrangment featureing a poster for the Women's Land ArmyKirsten Johnson, the first woman to be selected by the Liberal Democrats to represent North Devon in Westminster, visited St. Sabinus’ Church in Woolacombe as part of Remembrance Week. She spent time talking with many of the flower arrangers and to one of the organisers of the Flower Festival, Mary Lethbridge.

She particularly enjoyed the flowers, “God Speed the Plough” which had been designed to honour the memory of the Women’s Land Army and their vital war work in North Devon.

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A People’s Budget for the 21st Century:

A Liberal Democrat Alternative by Kirsten Johnson, Lib Dem PPC for NorthJean Foster and Kiirsten Johnson at South Molton Food Bank Devon

Across the South West, people are worried as the services they rely on suffer cut after cut, while the Conservatives are infighting over delivering a Brexit which will make the country poorer.

The wealth gap between the richest and the poorest is larger than ever. Vital public services, schools, hospitals and police stations are buckling under the strain of being underfunded and understaffed, while large corporations are making huge profits and not paying their fair share of tax.

During my recent visits to schools across North Devon, Heads tell me that school funding and support is at a 28-year low.

The current Conservative MP for North Devon pledged to oppose these cuts and asked people NOT to vote for him if he did not do so. By voting for this Conservative Budget he has, once again, broken his promise to the parents and children of North Devon.

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North Devon Lib Dem PPC Calls for An End to School Cuts

Kirsten Johnson, Headmaster Mike Johnson and Cllr David Worden at Chulmleigh Community CollegeKirsten Johnson, North Devon Prospective Parliamentary Candidate, visited Chulmleigh Community College and spent some time discussing the funding issues faced by rural schools. Mike Johnson, Headmaster said "We were delighted to welcome Kirsten Johnson, to the College. We explained the difficult funding situation for all rural schools, but particularly here in North Devon where we receive £300 less per pupil. Whilst we are pleased with the funding for the new school buildings, received from the last Coalition administration, we are now very concerned that the government seems to believe that it is possible to run schools on a shoestring."

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