Candidates announced for Peterborough City Council by-election

Arfan Khan (left) and Shaz Nawaz
Arfan Khan (left) and Shaz Nawaz

Labour and the Conservatives have announced their candidates for the Peterborough City Council by-election for Park ward.

Labour have chosen Shaz Nawaz, while the Tories have picked Arfan Khan.

The seat was vacated after the resignation of Labour councillor John Shearman due to personal reasons.

The other two councillors in the area are Richard Ferris (Labour) and John Peach (Conservative).

If the Conservatives win the seat, the party will hold 30 of the 59 filled council seats, with a by-election in Eye, Thorney and Newborough yet to be called.

Should the Conservatives win both by-elections, they would regain their majority on the council.

The by-election will be held on Thursday, August 17.

Mr Khan said: “I am very pleased to have been selected to stand in Park ward, the area where I have grown up and lived. I stood as a candidate in the 2016 all-out elections in Park ward but just missed getting elected by a few votes.

“I haven’t given up but worked in the ward and got involved in a number of local groups and organisations, charity events etc as well as being an active member of the Park ward “In Touch” team.

“I want to improve the area and the lives of Park ward residents. Cllr John Peach successfully campaigned for an extra £7.5 million to be spent in the Millfield area.

“I want to see that money is used well and to hear from local residents how they think it can be best spent. With my business and insurance background and community links I know if elected I will be able to represent all residents in what is a very changing part of town.”

Cllr Peach said: “I am really pleased Arfan Khan has been selected for this by-election. He is a good and hard worker with the business and community links to represent all residents.

“I know he wants to help sort the many problems with litter, fly-tripping and traffic and campaign for better improved free access to education. He has my full support.”

Mr Nawaz, who lives in the ward, said Mr Shearman had been a positive role model for him ever since he was his headteacher at The Beeches School.

He said: “First of all I would like to publicly thank John Shearman for all his hard work and achievements. Ever since primary school John has been a role model and mentor. It’s been a huge privilege to have worked alongside John for so many years.

“Second, I am delighted to be standing for Labour in this by-election. I have been a proud resident of the ward since 2001.

“John and Richard inspired me to get involved in local politics. I have been working alongside them to help improve our ward. You may have seen me in many of the newsletters where I’ve been supporting our Labour councillors.

“As a resident of the ward I am committed to continue the great work of John and Richard. I hope you will support me so that I can represent Park ward in the council.”

Mr Shearman said: “I have known Shaz since he was a student at The Beeches School, where I was head teacher. I remember him as a hard-working and conscientious student who always did his best.

He has displayed these same qualities in recent years working closely with Cllr Richard Ferris and myself in Park ward.

“Shaz and I share many views on the role of a local councillor - particularly the need to get out and about, working and supporting the local community.

I have no doubt he will make an excellent councillor and urge you to vote for him on August 17.”

People wishing to vote by post must apply by 5pm on Wednesday, August 2.

The count will take place at Peterborough Town Hall.