That the Alresford hustings as arranged by Cllr Sprott for Thursday June 27 should have been limited to the main party candidates is frankly a blatant affront to democracy. 

We believe it is only right and proper that both the electorate and the other candidates should have the opportunity to hear and question alternative viewpoints.

Independent, minor party candidates and minor parties bring a breath of fresh air to stale political thinking, and their contribution should be encouraged rather than eliminated. 
Consensus does not generate innovation, that is the job of people who think "outside the box", and that applies as much in politics as elsewhere. It is also important that whoever becomes the next MP gets to hear the voices of those that disagree with them. An email to an MP is one thing, but someone willing to stand against them indicates a level of desire and public support for a different direction. Our MPs are not only elected to enact their manifesto, but also to represent us in parliament. How can they do this effectively if they are excluded from hearing any non-mainstream voices?

We may represent different parties with different positions, but we all agree that the democratic process must be fair and allow all voices to be heard.

So, by copy of this letter I am asking Andy Sprott to reconsider, or to arrange another hustings to which only the previously excluded candidates will be invited. It's a less than adequate solution, but perhaps it could still be done prior to the election?

Going forward we might also suggest that it would be more appropriate to let the uninvited candidates know rather than allowing them to find out via the newspapers.

Chris Barfoot – Independent
Kevin D’Cruze - Independent
Andy Liming – Hampshire Independents 
Scott Neville – Nominating officer Hampshire Independents 

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