Left to right: Vaughan Gething (Labour) Dafydd Trystan Davies Plaid) ,Anthony Slaughter (Green) and Ben Gray (Conservative) are all in contention for the Cardiff South and Penarth constituency

Left to right: Vaughan Gething (Labour) Dafydd Trystan Davies (Plaid), Anthony Slaughter (Green) and Ben Gray (Conservative) are all in contention for the Cardiff South and Penarth constituency

There is to be an opportunity for Penarth residents to see and hear from some – possibly all – of the candidates vying for their vote in the forthcoming elections for the Welsh Assembly.

The Penarth Woodcraft Folk – the local charity that encourages children and young people to participate in society – is following-up on the success of last year’s General Election public hustings  by holding a Welsh Assembly Election Hustings on Saturday April 16th.

Last year's Penarth Woodcraft Folk General Election Hustings public meeting was held in the Main Hall at All Saints Church. The Assembly Election Hustings meeting is to be held in the "Small Hall" next door

Last year’s successful Penarth Woodcraft Folk General Election Hustings public meeting was held in the Main Hall at All Saints Church. Every seat was taken once the meeting got under way. The Assembly Election Hustings meeting on April 16th is to be held in the “Small Hall” next door

The Woodcraft public hustings will be held in the Small Hall of All Saints Church at Victoria Square, Penarth from 14:30 to 17:00 on April 16th – the same weekend  as “Picnic Penarth” is being held at nearby Station Approach.

Penarth Woodcraft Folk Hustings organiser John Rogan conferring with Stephen Doughty before last year's general election huistings

Penarth Woodcraft Folk organiser John Rogan conferring with candidate Stephen Doughty before last year’s General Election Hustings

The organiser, John Rogan says the hall has a capacity of up to 120 – making it “a perfect venue for young people to raise issues that concern them, particularly education.

Mr Rogan says young people had thoroughly enjoyed the General Election Hustings held in April last year and had been “glad to be able to question  politicians face to face”  – or as one 13-year-old had told him afterwards “to see them squirm in their seats”.

The proximity of Picnic Penarth that same weekend is seen as being more of an asset than a problem . Penarth Woodcraft Folk say “We think it would be a great idea to promote the hustings as somewhere to go –  and then any ‘lively debates’ can continue at the picnic”. 

One of the complications for the Penarth Woodcraft Folk organisers, in assembling a panel of Welsh Assembly candidates for a public hustings meeting, is the labyrinthine two-stage Assembly-Election process –  in which every elector takes part in what are in-effect  two separate Assembly Elections :-

  • One vote is for a single candidate to represent the Cardiff South and Penarth Assembly Constituency in what is a traditional first-past-the-post election – similar to electing an MP. So far four candidates have declared their intention to run in this race:-
    • Ben Gray (Conservative),
    • Anthony Slaughter (Green)
    • Vaughan Gething (Labour)
    • Dafydd Trystan Davies (Plaid)
  • Voters however also complete a second ballot paper  for what is called a “regional closed party list of candidates” for the South Wales Central Constituency (of which Penarth is a part). In this election so-called “Additional Member” seats are allocated by the d’Hondt method  . Candidates so far nominated to run in this contest  are :-
    • (Conservative) 1  Andrew R T Davies,  2 David Melding  3  Richard John  4 Keith Dewhurst
    • (Green)  1 Amelia Womack,  2 Anthony Slaughter, 3 Hannah Pudner, 4 Chris von Ruhland
    • (Labour) 1 Belinda Robertson
    • (Plaid Cymru) 1 Leanne Wood, 2 Neil McEvoy, 3 Dafydd Trystan Davies
    • (UKIP) 1 Gareth Bennet, 2 Alexandra Phillips, 3 Mohammad Islam, 4 Liz Wilkes

Despite frequent assertions that only the Cardiff South Penarth Assembly Member “really matters” and that the South Wales Central Members are somehow “second class AMs” – in fact all elected AMs are of equal status. Andrew R T Davies (Conservative) and Leanne Wood (Plaid) are both the leaders of their respective parties.

The Welsh Assembly Elections will be held on May 5th 2016 (the same day as the Police and Crime Commissioner Election). Nominations for the Welsh Assembly Elections  close on  April 7th 2016  so there may well be further names – and parties –  to add to the list before that date.

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  1. Brickie says:

    Let’s hope it’s not the impartial, infantile fiasco they put on for the General Election

    • John Rogan says:

      Look forward to seeing and, hopefully, hearing you there, Brickie.

      But seriously, there is absolutely nothing to stop anyone or anybody from trying to organise a Hustings. It’s not rocket science.

      1. Get a venue.
      2. Ask candidates if they can make it want to come.
      3. If they can, they can, if they can’t, well, as with the UKIP candidate last year, Sam Gould kindly came as a replacement.

      One thing to remember is we will be biased towards young people asking questions of the candidates.


  2. The Last Good Friday says:

    Woodcraft folk? Wasn’t the chap who organised the last hustings at the general election barred from voting in the Labour Leadership election, because his name was on a secrete list??
    I am glad the Labour movement has now done away with secrete lists of Hostile Folk :-O

  3. Philp Rapier says:

    Why do the Nanny State Westminster Politicians insist on inflicting this ridiculous Proportional Representation List System on the Welsh Nation? I have always had a modicum respect for the late Margaret Thatcher, this due only to her lack of fear of the Ballot Box. Even when she was being knifed in the back by her colleagues, she fought like a tiger to the day of her resignation. To quote her immortal words aimed squarely at the Leader of the Opposition one day.
    “is he just plain frit”? Obviously this Voting System provides a cosy comfort zone those who lack the moral courage to accept the Peoples First Past the Post Verdict.
    The people of the UK soundly rejected this shamocracy by a massive 2 to1 majority in the 2011 Lib Dem inspired Referendum. (below) Why continue to insult the voters of Wales with it unless it is to help those who are “Just plain frit” Just what is their excuse.
    UK-wide referendum on the Parliamentary voting system 2011
    Final national results
    6,152,607 Yes
    Total votes ‘Yes’: 32.10%
    13,013,123 No
    Total votes ‘No’: 67.90%

    • Mr Tim Gould says:

      Funny enough members of the two main parties are always against PR.
      Which one of the Chuckle Brothers political parties do you belong to.
      To you, to me, to you, to me.
      Ah yes, you are a Labour Councillor.

      People who think Labour under its leader Corbyn is un-electable
      Total Yes 100%
      Total No 0%

      People who think the Welsh Assembly needs a fresh governing party
      Total Yes 100%
      Total No 0%

  4. Mark Foster says:

    “In furtherance of the above objects but not otherwise the organisation shall further the International Cooperative Alliance’s Statement on the Co-operative Identity. It shall seek to be recognised as the Co-operative and Trade Union movements’ educational and empowerment organisation open to all with the aim of building an environmentally sustainable world built on children’s and human rights, equality, friendship, peace, economic & social justice and co- operation.”

    This is from the “Our Policies” section of the Woodcraft Folk website. This is a front organisation for Stephen Doughty and the Labour Party and these hustings are therefore clearly illegal.

    Of course the Queen must exercise the Royal Prerogative and shut down these farcical Welsh Parliaments to stop these cochons (Monsieur Cabanes de Plage) wasting our money and feeding at the trough of public finances, thus uniting and saving the British people including the Scots. She should also remove the politically-motivated Alun Michael.

    • John Rogan says:

      Woodcraft Folk is a non Party political charity. We are not a “front” for any Party.

      Within our local Woodcraft Folk, the parents of our children voted in a variety of ways at the last General Election – Labour, Green, Conservative and UKIP. In the past, we have had Plaid members among our Leaders.

      Btw, just Google my name and Labour to see the articles that were written here during the Labour leadership election. If you continue to think that I and Penarth Woodcraft are a front for Labour, you’d have to think we are running a subterfuge of Smiley’s People proportions just to pull the wool over people’s eyes.

      Our main interest is to get children to think for themselves and take an interest in the affairs of their country. That’s why we’re organising this.

  5. john64 says:

    Nothing wrong with holding a hustings as long as the chairman is not biased.

  6. Christopher David says:

    Now I know what a statesman is; he’s a dead politician. We need more statesmen.

    — Bob Edwards

  7. Sarah says:

    you’ve missed the Women’s Equality Party from your list of regional candidates!

  8. Christopher David says:

    The WEP, what do they stand for please? Apart from equality that is. Ta

Comments are closed.