With local elections looming, DAN GRIMMER looks at the Broadland battlefield.

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It’s all-out election time in Broadland, where the Conservatives will be looking to see off the challenge from the Liberal Democrats.

The Conservatives are currently comfortably in control of Broadland District Council, with 34 seats compared to the 12 Lib Dems and the single independent.

But, with council elections across all 27 wards, there is plenty to play for and, despite there being a coalition government, there is no love lost locally between the Conservatives and the Lib Dems.

The growth planned for areas to the north-east of Norwich has sparked controversy and the Lib Dems, having opposed the eco-town at Rackheath, could pick up votes on that issue.

The Lib Dems will have been buoyed by success in by-elections over the past couple of years in Buxton, Wroxham and Taverham, where they made gains, twice at the expense of the Conservatives.

But the Conservatives are saying their stewardship of the council shows they have the know-how to deliver in difficult times, pointing to recycling rates and sound financial management.

A number of leading twin-hatters are also up for election, including county council cabinet members Ian Mackie and James Carswell.

Several councillors have also decided to call it a day including Brian Iles, Charlotte Casimir, Tom Gasson and Dal Dewgarde.

Labour were wiped out in Broadland last time around, but they will be looking for a better showing this time around.

The party is especially hopeful of picking up votes from Lib Dem voters disappointed with life under a coalition government, particularly in the urban areas on the edge of Norwich such as Sprowston Central and Old Catton & Sprowston East.

The UK Independence Party are fielding nine candidates, including Glenn Tingle, former Norwich North parliamentary candidate.

The Green Party, who have yet to emulate their success in Norwich in Broadland, have six candidates, while there are three independents.

Voters in 15 parishes in the district will also be able to vote for their new parish councillor.

List of candidates for the Broadland District Council elections:

Acle: Lauren Bean (Lib Dem), Lana Hempsall (Con), Nigel Law (Ind), Malika Steed (Lab).

Aylsham: Jo Cottingham* (Con), Chris Evans (Lib Dem), Ian Graham* (Cons), David Harrison* (Lib Dem), Fiona Hunter (Lib Dem), Deborah Kerr (Lab), Malcolm Kemp (Lab), Anna Magyar (Green), Greg Peck* (Con).

Blofield with South Walsham: James Carswell (Con), George Debbage* (Ind), Paul Green* (Con), Joyce Groves (Lib Dem), Tony Hemmingway (Lab), Alan Pawsey (Lab), Lawrence Smith (Lib Dem).

Brundall: Caroline Fernandez (Green), Christopher Gill (Lib Dem), Christine Hemmingway (Lab), Brenda Jones (Lab), Eleanor Mason (Lib Dem), Andrew Proctor* (Cons), Mike Snowling* (Cons).

Burlingham: Ray Britt (Lab), Shirley Peters* (Lib Dem), David Ward (Cons).

Buxton: Leanne Davison (Con), Barbara Rix* (Lib Dem).

Coltishall: Alan Mallett* (Con), Victor Morgan (Lib Dem).

Drayton North: Fran Cawdron (Lib Dem), Roger Nash* (Con), Andrew Potts (Lab).

Drayton South: Roger Foulger* (Con), Peter Sergeant (Lib Dem).

Eynesford: Eddie Bamber (Con), Janette Dalston (Green), James Joyce* (Lib Dem).

Great Witchingham: Lorna Stolworthy (Lib Dem), Simon Woodbridge* (Con).

Hellesdon North West: David Britcher (Lib Dem), Danny Buck (Con), Peter Fish (Lib Dem), Terry Glasspoole (Lab), Shelagh Gurney* (Con), Jennifer Parkhouse (Green), Michael Walsh (UKIP), John Youles (UKIP).

Hellesdon South East: Tony Adams* (Con), Peter Balcombe* (Lib Dem), Sue Catchpole (Lib Dem), Matthew Graham (Lab), Michelle Ho (UKIP), John Prasad (Lab), Rita Ward (Con).

Hevingham: Paul Carrick* (Con), Jean Markwell (Lib Dem).

Horsford and Felthorpe: Veronica Beadle* (Lib Dem), Jonathan Ewing (Con), Joanne Keeler (Con), John Starling* (Lib Dem).

Marshes: Jan Davis (Green), David Parker (Lib Dem), John Pettiman (Con), Malcolm Wallis (Lab).

Old Catton and Sprowston: Peter Buckell (Lib Dem), Cliff Cutting (Lab), Stuart Dunn* (Con), Jonathan Fisher (Lab), Ken Leggett* (Con), Patricia Lewis (Lib Dem), David Thompson* (Con), Glenn Tingle (UKIP).

Plumstead: Patricia Fearns (Lib Dem), Christopher Jones (Lab), Shaun Vincent* (Con).

Reepham: Kerrie Barnett (Con), Christopher Wheeler (Lib Dem).

Spixworth with St Faiths: Bali Kular* (Lib Dem), Daniel Roper (Lib Dem), Paula Slater (Con), Christopher Thompson* (Con).

Sprowston Central: Philip Adams (UKIP), Jennifer Aldous (Lib Dem), Bill Couzens (Lab), Robert Fowkes (Lib Dem), Robin Knowles* (Con), Barbara Lashley (Lab), John Ward* (Con).

Sprowston East: Stuart Beadle (Lib Dem), John Bracey* (Con), Maggie Bradley (Con), Paul Findlay (Con), Ken Lashley (Lab), Chris Noble (Lab), Chrissie Rumsby (Lab), Victor Scrivens (Lib Dem), Shamsher Singh (Lib Dem), Philip Williams (UKIP).

Taverham North: Jason Bill (Lab), Christopher Hall (Con), Ian Kelly* (UKIP), Kenneth Kelly (Con), Nicholas Starling* (Lib Dem), Carole Ward (Lib Dem).

Taverham South: Claudette Bannock* (Con), James Beadle (Lib Dem), Stuart Clancy* (Con), Natalie Glasspoole (Lab), Jennifer Heard (Lib Dem).

Thorpe St Andrew North West: Wendy Atkinson (UKIP), John Fisher* (Con), Peter Harwood (Lab), Julie King (Ind), Ian Mackie* (Con), Victor Scrivens (Lib Dem), Nigel Shaw* (Con), Jill Wigy (Lab), Nick Williams (Lab), Jane Wright (Lib Dem).

Thorpe St Andrew South East: Joanna Barker (Lab), Lesley Barrett (Lab), Kim Davis-Claydon* (Con), Jonathan Emsell (Con), Trudy Mancini-Boyle (Con), Malcolm Martins (Lib Dem), Ross McCabe (UKIP), Phyllida Scrivens (Lib Dem), Susan Wright (Lab).

Wroxham: Nick Ball (Green), Steve Buckle (Lib Dem), Kenneth Furse (Lab), Chris Green* (Con), Ben McGilvray* (Lib Dem), Greg Slater (Con).

* – denotes sitting councillor.

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