Party politics and local government

Norman Pender is right to call for more independent councillors and I personally feel that local government should not be about party politics (Southern, March 8).

Those with a national party affiliation have a conflict of loyalties which on occasion make it difficult to act solely in the interests of local people.

In my experience as an independent councillor, while I was able to represent my ward effectively, it was difficult to develop a coherent platform for real change because I was operating alone. Independents are also disadvantaged by the new voting system.

That’s why I feel the Borders Party is an important development at a time when many people like Norman Pender have become disenchanted with party politics. It’s basically a group of independents getting together to provide cohesion and has the potential to reinvigorate the tradition of independent local politics in the Borders.

Andrew I. Farquhar

Wilton Dean