Representing the whole community of Bradford on Avon

Ideal Bradford were formed in 2017 with the aim of revitalising the Town Council and local democracy in Bradford on Avon. We were the majority group on Bradford on Avon Town Council from 2017 to May 2021.

In that time, we completed innovative and exciting projects, improved the way the Council runs, protected local green spaces and wildlife habitats, and set up projects to improve the town’s sport and recreational facilities.

Our current Councillors are committed to continuing and building on this work.

Who we are

previous arrownext arrow

We’re a group of local people who’ve got together to make a difference
We are your friends and your neighbours. We're working for you and your town, to protect it, improve it and make it the best that it can be for future generations
Click the photos above to find out more about Ideal Bradford's candidates in the upcoming election. We will be announcing more over the coming weeks, and we need your vote on May 6th!

We’re a group of local people who’ve got together to make a difference.
We are your friends and your neighbours. We're working for you and your town, to protect it, improve it and make it the best that it can be for future generations.

“Change only happens when ordinary people get involved”

Click the photos above to find out more about Ideal Bradford's current Councillors

Alex Kay
Councillor, North Ward

Professional geologist in the energy and environment sector who played a key role in Bradford’s Arts Festival before becoming a councillor in 2017.
Leading role in many successful Council projects: solar panels on St Margaret's Hall, public drinking water stations, public purchase of Becky Addy Woods, Avoncliff Weir repair, Grow BoA, Climate Emergency declaration and workshops and many others.
Chair of the Environment & Planning Committee.
Creative and analytical thinker with a passion for community, arts and environmental issues.

"We've come so far, let's continue the journey! Ideal Bradford have worked so hard and achieved so much in our four years as Councillors, with the exclusive focus of supporting our local community. I feel very proud of the projects we've delivered and I look forward to furthering this adventure."
Dave Garwood
Councillor, South Ward

Former senior civil servant, business consultant and director of an international NGO. Brings a weath of experience with complex projects to the Town Council.
A Bradford resident for more than twenty-five years.
Community radio presenter. Looking forward to getting back to teaching IT skills in the library when the world returns to normal.
Mayor, 2017–18. Leading role on Town Council tourism strategy. Chair of the Christmas Lights working group. In his second term, he plans to push on the with the skateboard project, and to help local businesses and tourism back on track after the pandemic.

“Living in Bradford-on-Avon is a real privilege and I will continue to promote the town as a beautiful place to visit and to work. One of my aims is to improve the visitor experience through the development of existing facilities and the introduction of new ones.”
Tom Lomax, Ideal Bradford
Emma Franklin
Councillor, South Ward

Raised in Bradford. Loves our town and has deep roots in its community. She understands what makes our town tick and has brought this passion and understanding to her hard work as a Councillor for the past four years.
Passionate about opening up local democracy, young people’s participation, and environmental issues. Has used her first term as Councillor to be a positive voice for the whole community.
Has got Bradford on Avon more involved in South West in Bloom and enjoyed making and looking after the beautiful planters for Whitehill and St Laurence Road.
Experienced retail manager with a strong working understanding of how important interpersonal relationships are in making organisations run well and achieve the best they can.

“I believe Ideal Bradford can make a real positive change by actively listening, working together and creating a sustainable environment for everyone in our town.”
Simon McNeill-Ritchie
Councillor, North Ward

Mayor of Braford on Avon for the last two years. Has worked on a wide range of community projects, bringing together community volunteers, and raising over £115,000 in grants for town projects.
Played a leading role in bringing Culver sports field and Sladesbrook Park and allotments into Town Council control, and organised the Countdown to Peace commemoration events for the centenary of the end of the First World War. Led the analysis of traffic flow data in the town as part of the KERB report and consultation. A Community Emergency Volunteer, and part of the team that repaired the Avoncliff Weir.
An award-winning social entrepreneur and former British Diplomat. Experienced in complex negotiations and working with competing interests to find positive results for all.

“I’m immensely proud of what we achieved in Ideal Bradford's first four years. We’ve got a lot more to give, and I’m looking forward to the opportunity to do even more over the next four.”
Simon McNeill-Ritchie, Ideal Bradford
Kate Bessant
Councillor, South Ward

Background in retail management, from Bristol independents and high-street giants. Now works in sales and communications for a local ceramics designer.
Has lived in Bradford for twelve years. Happy that she and her husband have been able to raise their children, now teenagers, in such a strong small-town community.
Volunteer for The Hub. Driven to find other ways to help people in the area to overcome the challenges of poverty. Sees stimulating the local job market through support for businesses as one important part of that.
Paddle-boarder, wild swimmer and vegetable grower. Keen to involve secondary school kids like her own in the conservation and sustainability work of Ideal Bradford and the Town Council, and to help secure the future of the old golf course as a green space for the whole community of our town.

“A vibrant and well supported town centre is the beating heart of any town. I am passionate about independent retail, and want to continue the work of the Council to support the diversity of business in Bradford.”

Get involved

Hosting a poster, delivering leaflets to your neighbours on a sunny afternoon, chipping in a few quid towards campaign costs, or just being part of a constructive conversation about what's best for Bradford on Avon; there are lots of ways to contribute to the work that Ideal Bradford is doing for our town.