C&R splits as members eye election spots

Deputy leader quits centre-right ticket, leader in quarrel over ward running mate

George Wood has set up a new ticket on the North shore to contest October's local body elections.  Photo / Natalie Slade
George Wood has set up a new ticket on the North shore to contest October's local body elections. Photo / Natalie Slade

The deputy leader of Communities and Residents, George Wood, has abandoned the centre-right ticket and set up a new ticket on the North Shore to contest October's local body elections.

And in the Albert-Eden-Roskill ward C&R leader and councillor Christine Fletcher has indicated she does not want C&R's Mark Thomas as her running mate for two seats on council.

Mr Wood told the Herald he was still a C&R member but running for the two North Shore seats with Devonport-Takapuna Local Board member Joseph Bergin under the banner Fair Deal, For Shore.

Mr Wood, a 66-year-old former North Shore Mayor, said he and Mr Bergin, 21, who is not a member of C&R, wanted to focus on the high rates burden for North Shore residents.

In Albert-Eden-Roskill, a plan by Orakei Local Board member Mr Thomas to stand with Mrs Fletcher has not gone down well.

Before leaving for the United States last Friday, Mrs Fletcher said on Facebook that she hoped an Albert-Eden-Roskill team member would be her running mate, "hopefully an enthusiastic Nigel Turnbull campaigning beside me".

Mr Turnbull - deputy chairman of the Puketapapa Local Board, one of two boards in the ward - is seeking a ward nomination.

Yesterday, former C&R president John Slater said it was no secret that Mrs Fletcher's preferred running mate was Mr Turnbull, a well-connected and highly regarded local constable in a very parochial ward.

A source told the Herald that the entire C&R Albert-Eden-Roskill team did not like Mr Thomas and were threatening to walk and set up a new ticket if he was selected.

Mr Thomas is holidaying in Canada. Last night, C&R president Karen Sherry said C&R was still going through a "highly contested" selection process in Eden-Albert-Roskill, but would not comment further.

- NZ Herald

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