The Democratic Network History: 2021
The Democratic Network
The Democratic Network is a registered political party
This page details the formation of The Democratic Network an the party’s work in the first half of 2021.
The Democratic Network will be supporting (but not standing) candidates in 2022.
A decision regarding standing of candidates in 2023 will be taken in the second half of 2022.
Democratic Network candidates and elected members will promise to be:
|Representative||Represent the interests of all residents and businesses regardless of the political views of those residents and businesses.|
|Accountable||Ensure the people they represent are informed about decisions in good time such that they can participate in and understand the decision making process|
|Practical||Bring practical experience to local decision making.|
In this March 2021 interview, Democratic Network founder and May 2021 local election candidate Nigel Jacklin (pictured above) explains why he set up a political party and more.
Seven of us stood in six counties making a small impact in a short amount of time.
Why did you set up The Democratic Network?
My interest in local decision making grew when there was a Town Hall resident’s protest about plans for new housing on the local marshes. There had been various consultations, the planning application being the last one in the process. Had people known earlier, that they could feed into to earlier stages of the Development and Site Allocation, things may have turned out differently. So my initial interest was in helping people know what was going on and how they could let the Council know their views early in the process. This was back in 2019. I developed some ‘Information Infrastructure’ proposals and even met with Google’s Global Head of Media Ecosystems to discuss them. After that meeting I decided to develop them myself with help from an ex-Financial Times colleague.
Why didn’t you just stand as an independent candidate?
As things progressed it also became clear that many people were disillusioned with local politics. People felt the main parties did not represent them and that party politics got in the way of what’s best locally. So we decided to set up a The Democratic Network and just do the job of representing local people. We registered as a political party earlier this year…even though we’re not political.
There may well be independent candidates who want to work with us. The advantage of registering a political ‘identity’ with the Electoral Commission is that you can have a logo on the ballot paper. It’s a sort of branding and reassurance that a candidate has the backing of a group of people. The network aspect means that candidates will have help. It may well be, that after the lists of candidates are published in April 9th, other candidates will join us.
Tell us a little about your background; what qualifies you to be a Councillor.
My wife Sheila and I moved to Normans Bay in 1992 where we raised our family. We liked the sea, countryside and the friendly people. I worked for top market research company Ipsos and left to set up my own business at home. I’ve worked for clients like the Financial Times, the British Medical Journal, MTV and local telecare company Doro. My job is to understand what people want, what will work and to help make better decisions.
What’s happening in the photo?
I was invited to speak at a peaceful gathering in Hyde Park last July (2020). I gave a talk on covid mortality statistics. I wrote a speech that lasted about 15 minutes and started giving it. The policeman in the picture had kindly provided a step ladder for me to use. There were about 250 people in the crowd. As I’m not good at shouting someone handed me a megaphone. It turns out that using amplification is illegal at Speakers Corner and so I had to quickly summarise my talk in about 40 seconds.
And what was the conclusion of your talk?
Mortality rates are determined by a variety of factors. My conclusion was that well documented issues such as underlying health inequalities and NHS capacity/effectiveness could be as important as covid. We should not ignore these factors; they needed solving too.
How have your views changed since then?
The underlying conclusion has not changed. The government has spent billions on covid. Could some of this have been better invested at a local level?
Our May 2021 Local Election Candidates
We would like to thank the 30 Honorary Members who help with the conceptualisation of the party over the last two years including:
Andy, Barbara, Caroline, Cathy, Chris, Dene, Di, Duncan, Ellis, Helen, John, John, Katie, Keith, Leah, Lijeh, Linda, Linda, Liz, Martin, Matt, Nadya, Pauline, Rob, Sam, Sarah, Serena, Simon, Tim, Zack, and many more.