Following the recent resignation of Marion Bland as local district councillor, Paul Ray of Chadsmead Liberal Democrats has declared his intention to stand in the forthcoming by-elections to Lichfield District and Lichfield City Councils.
As a banking lawyer with Midland law firm Browne Jacobson, Mr Ray has successfully blended two of the most derided professions into one career. A serial electoral loser Mr Ray commented:
‘I have worked closely with Marion, helping and advising her for many years – I’m pleased to say that she eventually took the hint and resigned. For the record I’d like to praise Marion for all the hard work that she has put in over the years and to personally thank her for keeping the seat warm – a job she is admirably equipped to do.’
Tributes have poured in from across the political spectrum. Labour group leader Sue Norman said:
‘I’d like to thank Marion for her valuable contributions to Council meetings. Yes, I’d like to, but..’
A local authority officer commented:
‘Marion can be quite a formidable lady, especially when drinking pints and wearing lederhosen.’
Mrs Bland spoke of her resignation, she said:
‘I’m resigned to the piss poor prospects for the LibDems nationally and locally, it makes me sick so I’m off. In the circumstances Paul Ray is the ideal candidate to enhance my reputation, folks will look back and say, you know she wasn’t that bad in comparison.
‘Paul upholds many traditional LibDem values, particularly the ability to lose elections. He lost to me in 2012 and again 2015 when he simultaneously lost the Parliamentary election, quite a track record even for a LibDem.’
Paul Ray has never lived in Chadsmead for over 14 years, he is married with children. Paul’s wife Xena Ray is his strongest supporter, she commented:
‘This is great news for Poor, I’m pleased Marion eventually saw sense. His work out in the badlands takes him away most evenings and weekends, we hardly ever see him – it’s great. He hasn’t even realised that we’ve moved out yet.’