General election campaign still restricted after Manchester bomb tragedy

Following the truly awful bomb attack on Monday night, all political parties suspended campaigning for the general election. That was the right decision – and the only decision that could be made after such an appalling and incomprehensible tragedy.

The national suspension remains in place until tomorrow night at least. Local campaigning for is resuming today but will be low key for the next few days. It is important that the democratic process continues regardless of the efforts of terrorists to disrupt our society through killing and maiming.

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Did you have problems voting on 4 May? Let me know

I have received several disturbing reports about people being denied the opportunity to vote at the Shropshire Council unitary elections on 4 May.

One report is of a postal vote denied, even though the voter had used the same details since 2009. I have more reports of people being asked for evidence of identity at one polling station. Some people, I hear, were turned away before casting their vote. There is no requirement for a polling card or proof of identity at a polling station.

Before I make a formal complaint about this, I need more details. Please contact me if you have been affected. Your response will be anonymous. 01584 874029 andy@andybodders.co.uk

Underinvestment is link between attacks on NHS computers and unexpected Ludlow home birth

At the time I write this, there are predictions that the attack on NHS and many other computers in organisations worldwide will get worse. The ransomware is exploiting a specific vulnerability in computer operating systems. In the NHS, that vulnerability is chronic lack of investment.

In a seemingly unrelated event last weekend, maternity campaigner Alison Hiles gave birth at her east Ludlow home after Ludlow Maternity Unit was closed at short notice. But the reason that the doors of the maternity unit were shut was yet again the chronic lack of investment in the NHS.

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Four candidates standing for general election in Ludlow constituency

Nominations for candidates for the general election closed Thursday night. Here in Ludlow, four candidates are standing. Philip Dunne will bat for the Conservatives. Julia Buckley is standing for Labour. Hilary Wendt is the Green candidate. Heather Kidd will represent the Liberal Democrats.

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Shropshire Council Elections 2017: We could have gained more progressive seats

The unitary elections were not a disaster for any political party other than UKIP. The Liberal Democrats lost one seat to the Conservatives as did Labour and an independent. The Greens lost one seat but gained another.

Although the Conservatives gained 7% more votes and one more seat over 2013, the opposition was far from decimated. Could more seats have been won if the opposition parties had cooperated? I think so. And if we had have done so, we might have created a very different, progressive future for our county.

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