Lee Dunnnig
Lee Dunning Credit: Lee Dunning

Lee Dunning from Cwmbran was the first Independent candidate to stand in a general election in Torfaen since 2010.

I’ve known Lee for several years through a shared love of good beer. We’ve bumped into each other at pubs in the town and at Campaign for Real Ale meetings.

In 2022, he took the skills he learned brewing beer at home to start his own brewery and taproom- and opened Weird Dad Brewery at a site in Newport.

Last night, well in the early hours of this morning, we chatted socially in the candidates’ area but I didn’t get the chance to ask him on the record how it felt to be the only Independent and what he got out of the experience.

So I did that today and this is what he told me:

“For me personally, it’s been enlightening to get around Torfaen and encounter amazing people from charities, councillors, council workers, small traders and most of all people looking for a better Torfaen.

“It was important to stand to give people an option away from party politics as I, like many, feel frustrated and disappointed with lies. power seeking, failure to deliver and questionable political donations that we see far too often.

“After a long few weeks, today brings a new dawn and I am looking forward, in hope, to see our inward government delivering the welcomed change they have promised. I may spend some time watching and reminding them if given the opportunity.

“It was a pleasure to spend a little time with Mr Nick Thomas-Symonds discussing policy and wish him well with his pledge to put the people first in his representation of Torfaen.

“I wish to thank everyone who supported me so far on this journey.”

Torfaen 2024 general election result

Nick Thomas-Symonds, Welsh Labour, won the Torfaen seat in the 2024 General Election.

The full result of this morning’s election count for Torfaen:

  • Welsh Labour- Nick Thomas-Symonds- 15,176
  • Reform UK- Ian Williams- 7,854
  • Welsh Conservative Party- Nathan Edmunds- 5,737
  • Plaid Cymru- Matthew Jones- 2,571
  • The Green Party- Philip Davies- 1,705
  • Welsh Liberal Democrats- Brendan Roberts- 1,644
  • Independent- Lee Dunning- 881
  • Heritage Party- Nikki Brooke- 137