Meet the Hartlepool council candidates in the Headland and Harbour ward

This year’s local elections are just around the corner and we are turning the spotlight on all Hartlepool’s candidates in the run-up to polling day on May 6.

All the candidates are being given the opportunity to tell readers why they are standing in the elections to gain a seat on Hartlepool Borough Council.

Here's what the nine candidates standing in the Headland and Harbour ward had to say on why you should vote for them.

Sophie Chapman (Labour Party)

The eight candidates who submitted photos are pictured left to right. Back row, Sophie Chapman, Matthew Dodds, Tim Fleming and Adam Gaines. Front row, Alison Hockborn, Shane Moore, Mark Stacey and Barbara Ward.

With a background in accountancy, I want to bring efficiency and value for money to the council.

We need to use the public’s money more effectively to deal with their priorities and not the councillor vanity projects of the past.

Born and bred in the town, I am passionate about making positive changes for our community.

I want to work for the residents of Headland and Harbour, listen to what they want and ensure I act on their demands for our community. Read Labour’s plan for Hartlepool at

Brian Cowie (Conservative Party)

This year your Council Tax was frozen by Conservatives and Independents working together for the better of the town.

Vote Conservative so that you have a local voice for your area and together we can work directly with Ben Houchen, Tees Valley Mayor, for a better Hartlepool going forward.

The choice is clear in this election, only you can vote for positive change for your area on Thursday 6th May - Vote Conservatives.

Matthew Dodds (Labour Party)

As a project planner working in the nuclear and energy production sector for over a decade I have gained invaluable experience taking big decisions and ensuring value for money.

Throughout my career I have learned that when working people roll up their sleeves and get stuck in, real change can be affected in our communities.

My experience of running large, time sensitive projects will be put to good use in ensuring accountability, efficiency and propriety within the council.

Read Labour’s plan for Hartlepool at

Tim Fleming (Hartlepool Independent Union)

I was first elected in 2005 as an Independent and never lost an election since. I supported Brexit and I voted against the 31% rise in councillor allowances when it was introduced in 2017.

I don’t believe in party politics being a factor in local politics.

I’m married, my wife Jane is the licensee of the Cosmopolitan. I've lived on the Headland (formally known as Hartlepool) all my life, except during military service in the army, I was a fireman for 16 years before injury retired me.

I then took up teaching humanities for about 10 years before again being retired through illness.

Adam Gaines (Independent)

I own a pub Rosie’s and previously owned/worked for Tech companies. I’m running as MP and councillor.

I’ll object to and call out all wasteful vanity projects by councillors which don’t result in job creation and a reasonable return on investment.

I’ll work with my brother Adrian Gaines (if elected) and others to put in place controls that will help save council tax payers' money.

I’ll call for a council tax rebate funded by the central government. Central funding cuts have led to one of the highest council taxes in the country.

Alison Hockburn (Labour Party)

I have worked as a taxi driver for the last ten years and am also a fundraiser for the local Hartlepool Hawks Cheerleading Academy.

Our town's greatest asset is its people and I am ready to work for the residents on the council to make Hartlepool a better place for us all.

As a taxi driver I hear the concerns and priorities of local people every single day and I believe that this willingness to listen to residents is vital to being a good councillor.

Read Labour’s plan for Hartlepool at

Shane Moore (Hartlepool Independent Union)

Representing the people of Headland & Harbour ward for the past fiveyears has been a huge honour.

This is the area I grew up in, the people I grew up with and where my heart will always belong. That is why I have worked hard to ensure we get our fair share of funding, regeneration and a strong voice on the council.

New play areas, redevelopment of Headland Bandstand, refurbishment of Borough Hall, huge capital projects at Marina underway, investing in our neighbourhoods and constantly talking our area up. I have delivered as promised but there’s more to come.

Mack Stacey (Veterans’ and People's Party)

I am 35-year-old and have lived in Hartlepool all my life.

I am a qualified graphic designer and having attended college in the town, if elected one of my priorities will be to try to get more funding for education and for the arts, music and entertainment.

I feel not enough is spent on these areas and we need to provide more opportunities for young people on the Headland and Hartlepool in general.

Barbara Ward (Hartlepool Independent Union)

Since becoming your councillor, I can say I have enjoyed doing what I have always been passionate about which is working alongside and helping people in our community.

I have lots of experience from my personal life and professional career in health and wellbeing.

I am well aware of the difficulties we all face in our day to day lives and I would like to continue to be a voice for you again from May.

I have worked to resolve local issues and help implement some much needed improvements and would love to continue to do more.

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