Here’s some memories of the last 48 hours:
….one lady phoning Jackie up to apologise for not voting – she was ill and couldn’t even face coming down to the polling station by car… Jackie was touched by the fact that the lady felt really guilty about it…
…. voters bringing some really nice dogs down to the polling station with them – perhaps the favourite being a black and white collie at Pope John Hall
…. few of us slept well last night, waiting for the count. It was nerve -racking occasion ! We felt a little better once we saw that June and Ron were back with thumping majorities…. but we still had to wait for Sweyne Park and Lodge.
….. There was an outside chance that Pat Putt might win Lodge but it was impossible to predict with four candidates standing. We had a pleasant conversation with some of the English Democrats people – they seemed keen to debate political issues there and then (which is something you don’t normally do at the count!)
…… We were hoping that Jackie might win Sweyne Park but we were steeling ourselves for a disappointment – to come a close second after all the hard work would have been almost heartbreaking. After the staff had finished counting the Sweyne Park votes there was a pause for about 5 minutes before the presiding officer showed us the figures. All we could do was look at the bundles of votes – the ones with blue bulldog clips were Tories and the ones with yellow bulldog clips were Lib Dems, but they were hard to count. Jackie thought she had just won but felt unsure because Chris Black was quite gloomy. We almost went into shock when we were told Jackie had just managed it by 30 votes.
…. Chris Black moved swiftly down to where June and Chris Lumley were chatting to someone and dragged them away from their conversation – he was still too stunned to say Jackie had won but just said “The result is worth listening to!”
…… Probably the best speeches on the night were made by two Hullbridge candidates – Lesley Butcher (Conservative) and Angelina Marriott (Labour)
…..As we left the Mill after the count we got chatting with Angelina and found out that Marie Oatham (Ron’s wife) was one of her old primary school teachers!….