Press Release: R4U announces another local Tory defection

Tuesday 3rd February 2015, Uttlesford: Residents-for-Uttlesford (R4U), the local advocacy party for towns and villages, has announced that former Saffron Walden Mayor and longstanding Town Councillor Sarfraz Anjum has crossed the aisle from the Conservatives to join them. He is the fourth councillor to leave the Tories for R4U in as many months.

Cllr Sarfraz Anjum (R4U)
Cllr Sarfraz Anjum (R4U) – Saffron Walden Town Council
Commenting on the decision Cllr Sarfraz Anjum stated: “Whilst I remain a Conservative nationally, when it comes to local politics the traditional political parties promote a Westminster based agenda whereas R4U is the only party which promotes the best interests of residents. We need to remove the burden of bureaucracy, cut inefficient expenditure of taxpayers’ money and adopt a transparent common sense approach which puts the residents first. R4U is the only party that can give locals the right and power to decide the future of their community.”

Cllr John Lodge R4U Chairman
Cllr John Lodge R4U Chairman
R4U Chairman Cllr John Lodge said: “We are very excited that Sarfraz Anjum has joined Team R4U. He is a well-respected entrepreneur with a long public service record having served as a Councillor for more than ten years. Not only have we now gained another Saffron Walden Town Councillor, but our broader election campaign is gaining momentum across the district.”

Local party Residents-for-Uttlesford have stated that their goal is to “take back Uttlesford District Council for residents” in the May elections. In late 2014 district councillors Heather Asker, Keith Mackman and David Watson joined R4U from the Tories. Former Lib-Dem Mayor and district councillor Richard Freeman and Labour parliamentary candidate Barbara Light also defected to R4U at the same time. In the run up to the election R4U have already announced 14 district council candidates in addition to the 4 elected councillors they already have.

About Residents for Uttlesford

Residents for Uttlesford (R4U) is the local independent party of north-west Essex towns and villages. Formed in 2014 by a number of residents’ groups, the party believes that on local issues residents should decide, not Westminster parties. R4U’s success has been based on the desire to give local people a voice and implement long range strategic and sustainable plans for their area.

R4U leads Uttlesford District Council (UDC). In its first election in 2015 it became the second party at UDC. In the May 2019 R4U took majority control of UDC by gaining two-thirds of the seats. Since then it has set about re-engineering the now award-winning council operates, rebuilding the finances and fixing how planning is done. In 2021 the party won half the Essex County Council seats in Uttlesford district.

R4U also leads Saffron Walden Town Council, where under its stewardship the council has rebuilt finances, invested in community assets, and won multiple awards, including the best run council in Essex. It is a minority party on Great Dunmow Town Council.

Residents for Uttlesford can be found on the web at