I will work hard for city

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I would like to thank all the people who voted in the Sandhill by-election on January 12 , and the 824 people who have put their faith in me and lent me their votes.

It’s a real privilege to represent the part of Sunderland I’m from, and I will try my very best to be a different sort of councillor, who keeps in touch all year round.

Sunderland is never going to be a Conservative-voting city – and I think it’s clear to everyone UKIP aren’t capable of making an impact here either. But it’s really important that we have an opposition to Labour on the Council: the Liberal Democrats are offering that opposition in Millfield, East Pallion and Thornholme, and now in Grindon, Hastings Hill, North Farm, Springwell and Thorney Close. We are challenging the Labour-run Council to do better for our city.

I also want to thank the other parties and candidates in this election. In all the years I have lived in the ward, I have never seen a lively political campaign, and so many people of different parties working hard to earn people’s votes. It was really refreshing.

I recognize that not everyone in the ward voted for me, but I am keen to listen to and work hard for everyone in Sandhill ward, regardless of their political allegiances. I want better for my area, and I know you all do too.

Stephen O’Brien,

Liberal Democrat Councillor for Grindon, Hastings Hill, North Farm, Springwell, and Thorney Close