One of the sad things about Local Elections is that because of because of a reaction against Westminster politics or council polices , we see often very good councillors lose their seats.Sometimes by people who have no real connection with the ward and who will not put in the hard work that their predecessor had.
I remember a newly elected Plaid Councillor, in the 1980's who told me that his first duty was to arrange a funeral for a family with learning difficulties. It was a duty he felt rather than he was obliged to carry out . He was an example of those who feel that they represent the people of their wards first and they should do their utmost to help them.
Last Thursday he lost his seat As did a number of other councillors who felt the same way.Whether they were Plaid, LiberalDemocrat,Independent and yes even Conservatives.
And yes previously the same thing had happened to excellent Labour councillors who suffered the backlash when they were in power in the 13 years after 1997.
For voters even for those who support an other political party . there is often dilemma between voting for the person who is best to serve and reacting against Westminster or the policies of that council ,.
I faced the dilemma in the Beddau ward . The Labour candidate Richard Yeo had won the seat in a byelection in three way fight between Labour Plaid and an Independent only to lose it a year later to the Independent when there was no Plaid candidate.
Since then he has nursed the ward and looked like the best candidate. Luckily for me I was able to realise he was going to win this time and could safely vote Plaid. But if I had thought he was going to be beaten by the Independent I may have voted for him. and would have if there was no Plaid
And if I lived in the Trealaw ward . Where the new Labour Councillor Joy Rosser held the seat comfortably what would I have done?
Because I Have known and liked Joy for a number of years her husband Paul is one of my favourite musicians and over 10 years ago with a group of other friends, we climbed Ben Nevis together and believe me you get to know people going up Britain's Highest mountain..
So in Trealw even if they looked like they could win. I would have probably have voted for Joy unless I really knew the Plaid candidate and he or she was equally capable.
But that's the problem with an electoral system . If we had STV I could vote firstly for the Party I want but at the same time give my second vote to someone I thought would be a good councillor from another Party
All over Wales people will be finding that the councillor who would respond to their complaints vigorously is no longer there. We must ensure that we don't lose our best because we don't like the Party they represent at the time.