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Harlow Conservatives: Meet the candidates

General / Sat 17th Apr 2021 at 04:06pm

Meet the Conservative Candidates

ON Thursday 6th May, residents will have the chance to vote in three elections: Harlow Council elections, Essex County Council elections and the Police & Crime Commissioner elections. Today, we are taking a closer look at the team the Conservatives have unveiled for the Harlow Council elections.

Harlow Common – James Leppard


James Leppard was raised in Harlow and has strong connections locally. He has worked internationally in banking and finance in several emerging markets. He is an active member of Harlow Rugby Club and passionate about youth sports and helping to make Harlow a natural hub for business and enterprise to generate investment and quality employment opportunities for our town.

Sumners & Kingsmoor – Russell Perrin.

Russell Perrin is an Assistant Head teacher at Stewards Academy. He has campaigned for several years to reduce council tax and for greater investment in local services and education. He successfully overturned Labour’s decision to charge for the first hour of parking in the town’s local car parks. Russell was a leading figure, working with MP Robert Halfon and business organisations to ensure that Harlow received Enterprise Zone status which is now creating up to 5000 jobs.

Great Parndon – Eddie Johnson



Eddie Johnson is a former lifetime employee of Pitney Bowes. He served for four years as Chairman of Governors at St Luke’s Primary school and was the leading figure who reformed our waste collection service which led to Harlow having some of the highest recycling rates in Essex. Eddie successfully campaigned for major infrastructure funding including improvements to the road network by Mark Hall school leading to the Enterprise Zone and M11 Jct 7A.

Netteswell – Colleen Morrison


Colleen Morrison runs a small business here in Harlow which delivered food to Harlow’s supermarket warehouses throughout the pandemic. Colleen grew up in Netteswell and was a leading campaigner with Hands Off Our Park (HOOP). HOOP opposed the Labour Council’s support for building a sports complex on 37 acres of the Town Park. Colleen was an active member of the Vote Leave campaign. Colleen is now campaigning for more parking places in Netteswell.

Toddbrook – Ash Malik


Ash Malik has served as a special constable. He worked for a time in retail security and worked for London underground for 16 years. He has also been a bus driver for Arriva buses in Harlow. Ash currently works at Stansted airport helping passengers with mobility issues. Ash has campaigned for several years in Harlow for better use of taxpayer’s money and a greener cleaner Harlow.

Toddbrook – Gareth Williams


Gareth Williams is a modern foreign languages teacher and Head of Year at a school in East London. Gareth has supported the Conservatives campaign to cut council tax. As a former amateur rugby player and all-round sports enthusiast Gareth is keen to invest more in our parks and open spaces to encourage more children to become involved in sport.

Bush Fair – Dan Swords


Dan Swords is a vociferous local campaigner, working hard to get the Labour Council to release Government Grant money to support local businesses and residents. Dan is standing up for residents on their priorities, be it better parking, safer streets or restoring pride in our town. He has successfully campaigned and worked on many big local projects including securing the funding for Harlow’s new hospital, up to £76 million for regeneration and higher per pupil funding.

Staple Tye – Alistair Gunn


Alastair Gunn’s professional background is in campaigning, fighting for better services for local people and helping change the law to better protect victims of domestic abuse. He also runs a charitable trust that funds educational, health and cultural causes and, as a supporter of Harlow’s green spaces and natural environment, he volunteers with the Canal & River Trust on the River Stort.

Little Parndon & Hare Street – Adam Jolles


Adam Jolles works as a mortgage and insurance broker. Born in Harlow, he returned to live here permanently in 2012. Adam’s parents (both long standing councillors) dedicated much of their lives to helping the community. Following in their footsteps, Adam would like to continue the fight to reduce council tax and improve the services for residents.

Mark Hall – Matthew Saggers


Matthew Saggers is a local volunteer scout leader supporting children in our community. Matthew has also been a vocal campaigner against the Labour council’s recent decision to charge all leaseholders for gas and electrical certification even though this is not required by law. The Council’s decision to force some 2500 leaseholders to pay for certification is costing residents many hundreds of pounds.

Old Harlow – Mike Garnett


Mike Garnett has been an active District Councillor for almost 20 years. He has helped residents with numerous issues including getting grass cut, school places, roads and footpath repairs and rent/Council Tax problems. He is a leading member of local groups who take part in Litter Picking and Speed Watch. He openly campaigns with his fellow ward councillors against excessive building on our local green wedges including protecting the playing field next to Jocelyns from development. He is fervently opposed to any development in Harlow East.

Church Langley – Nicky Purse


Nicky Purse is a manager at Clarkes shoes in Harlow town centre. Nicky is also an active member of the Church Langley residents association. Nicky has worked hard in partnership with Simon Carter and other Councillors in Church Langley to ensure that the Council released previously withheld money from the Church Langley improvement fund to carry out maintenance and improvement works.

Church Langley – Simon Carter


Simon Carter has been an active Councillor in Church Langley for 21 years. He is a former Chairman of Streets to Homes, a local charity which supports and rehouses homeless people in the community. Simon has also been a longstanding advocate of people with disabilities. He is the Chairman of the Harlow Area Access Group which actively promotes the adoption of inclusive design and management to create environments which are accessible and usable by everyone.

The Conservatives say:

The Conservatives are seeking to overturn Labour – who have been in charge of the Council for the last nine years. The Council has hiked Council Tax in eight of those nine years, despite the Conservatives consistently showing that Council Tax could have been frozen or cut. With the approval of the Council’s Chief Financial Officer, the Harlow Conservatives are proposing to cut Council Tax and invest in our much-loved services such as the Town’s parks, paddling pools, Pets Corner and the Playhouse.

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