Former Conservative politician reveals plan to contest every ward with independents at Doncaster Council elections in 2025

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A former Conservative councillor and mayoral candidate has announced a campaign to create a coalition of independent councillors in Doncaster.

Former councillor and mayoral candidate James Hart has revealed plans to diversify Doncaster Council’s representation following his departure from the Conservative Party last month.

The “Doncaster Independents” campaign will aim to see an independent candidate stand in every ward across the borough in the 2025 local elections.

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Mr Hart hopes that the campaign will impact Doncaster’s historic Labour majority and create a “progressive coalition” of independent councillors.

Former Conservative councillor and mayoral candidate, James HartFormer Conservative councillor and mayoral candidate, James Hart
Former Conservative councillor and mayoral candidate, James Hart

Plans will also see members of the coalition select a representative to stand as an independent mayoral candidate.

Mr Hart announced his departure from the Conservative Party last month, after 22 years of active membership.

He said: “As I grow older I expect more from our politicians at national and local level.

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“It became clear to me that the Conservative Party at national level has lost its way, infighting amongst our MPs and successive leadership contests have distracted them from delivering for the British people.

“I’ve always believed that a successful Conservative Party is one that focuses on getting more money in people’s pockets (not the MPs) so we can have a better quality of life, spend more and create more jobs. A virtuous circle.

“Because of the distractions at the top we’ve had low growth, increased immigration and a decline in the quality of our public services. On top of this we’re experiencing the highest tax burden in years.

“This isn’t fair on the British people. I couldn’t be part of an organisation that has failed so drastically over the last two years.”

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Mr Hart previously represented the party as a town councillor and later ward councillor in Hatfield.

In 2015 he became leader of the Doncaster Conservatives, making a bid for Mayor of Doncaster in 2021.

He gained the largest number of votes for a Conservative candidate, coming in second to Labour Mayor Ros Jones.

His criticism of the Labour council underpins the Doncaster Independents campaign, claiming that the borough is “poorly served” by the party.

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He added: “I completely understand why the voters of Doncaster would not want to put their cross next to any Conservative candidate and that is why I have come to the conclusion that the only way to change Doncaster is through a progressive coalition of Independent Councillors.

“I would urge anyone interested in the way that Doncaster is run to come together with the goal of changing the current leadership.

“A co-ordinated attempt to make most council seats a two horse race would be ideal but the Conservative Party have a policy of putting a candidate in every seat, so that isn’t going to happen.

“So a three horse race, getting the message across that a Conservative vote is a wasted vote in every seat which the Conservatives do not currently have sitting councillors, would be the way forwards.”

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Mr Hart has encouraged existing independent parish and town councillors to run, adding that the campaign will be inclusive of local interest parties.

More information can be found at or by emailing [email protected]

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