PEOPLE who go to the polls in Devizes on February 21 will have an unusually high number of candidates to choose from as five people have thrown their hats into the ring.

Big issues such as parking in the Market Place, the closure of Braeside eduction centre and the redevelopment of Green Lane playing field mean the seat made vacant by the resignation of Guardian Albert Wooldridge will be hotly contested.

The three main parties already represented on the town council have all selected candidates with Vickie Stanley representing the majority group of the Devizes Guardians, Ian Pennington standing for the Conservatives and Ivor Blackmore.

The Lib Dems are also standing with Karyn Perlejewski-Shah putting herself forward and businessman Iain Wallis is standing as an independent.

Mr Wallis, who has previously stood as a Conservative, was a late addition. He said: " I made the decision to stand as a direct result of the controversial move to remove parking from the Market Place and hope to use my election campaign as a way of bringing everyone to the table to negotiate an acceptable way forward for all."

Guardian Vickie Stanley has lived in Devizes for five years and works for the National Health Service. She has volunteered for Devizes Saddleback music festival and is secretary for the local CAMRA real ale group.

She said: " promote the prosperity of our community while protecting it from inappropriate development and the consequential damage to our environment and local facilities."

Conservative Ian Pennington, who has lived in Devizes for many years, says he wants to make sure the Market Place becomes a community hub and to support the plan for the Assize Court to be refurbished.

Labour Ivor Blackmore, who lives locally and runs his own business as an IT consultant is particularly keen on plans to improve Green Lane playing field and for the urgent care centre in Marshall Road to be built. He said: "I have also supported the campaign to save Braeside and Oxenwood outdoor education centres and worked with others campaigning to keep schools for children with special education needs, small, local and accessible. If elected I would work collaboratively with others to protect the quality of life that makes Devizes a vibrant and successful town.

Lib Dem Karyn Perlejewski-Shah moved to Devizes 20 years ago. She said: "My son Henry and daughter Verity both went to Wansdyke Primary and Devizes School.

"I work as the Deputy Manager of Townsend Barn Nursery at Poulshot. She said: " Children’s education is a passion of mine and I’ve have been involved in the campaigns to save Braeside and Rowdeford special school.

"One key issue facing Devizes at the moment is the parking in Market Place – we need to maintain as much free parking as possible in order for local businesses to thrive. This matter needs to be taken back to Wiltshire Council now that the strong feelings of the people of the town are clear."