I WOULD be grateful for the opportunity to thank those in the West Heath Ward, Cove, who voted for me in the recent election.

The electorate's disenchantment with the political system is such that many were prepared to take a chance on a first- time candidate and a new party. I appreciate their support.

Many members of other political parties have expressed surprise that we did so well with just one leaflet per household and no local publicity. It didn't surprise me because I know from speaking to people in the area that more and more of them are frustrated by the failure of the established political parties to address the issues I raised.

The Barnett formula, the excessive cost of the Government's failed immigration and asylum policies and the steady drift of power to a centralised EU have local consequences. All these issues affect in one way or another the amount of tax we pay and the quality of services we get.

At local level people are justifiably unhappy about the recent rise in council tax, which averages 16% in England but only 4% in Scotland. Yet the people of Scotland enjoy a higher rate of public spending, better services and more generous allowances. Guess who is paying for it? - that's right, we are. All thanks to the Barnett formula.

The English Democrats party has made a small first step but we "have arrived". I hope this modest but promising start will give many people new hope and encourage them to join the EDP and stand as candidates. If that happens, it won't be long before we start winning seats.

Gary Cowd, National Council member of the English Democrats party, Douglas Place, Farnborough.