Isle of Wight Council cabinet members are among the well-recognised councillors who have confirmed plans to step down at the forthcoming local elections.

Candidate lists are still being finalised, but some familiar names have already announced they will not be throwing their hats into the ring, when Islanders go to the polls in May.

Among them, Ryde councillor Wayne Whittle said he felt he had been 'obstructed' from doing his job and it was time to "be like a DFS sofa, totally interest free" (scroll down for his comments in full).

The Isle of Wight Council's Deputy Leader and its former cabinet member for procurement, waste management and special projects are also both standing aside.

On May 6, we will be asked to vote for town and parish councillors, the Police and Crime Commissioner and those Islanders who will represent us at County Hall, the home of the Isle of Wight Council.

But will your current councillor be in the running?

Here are six people who will definitely not be standing for re-election.

Paul Bertie

Isle of Wight County Press: Isle of Wight Councillor Paul Bertie

Cowes North councillor Paul Bertie was first elected in May 2013.

As well as holding a seat on the Isle of Wight Council, the business owner is a member of Cowes Town Council and he says that is now where he wants to concentrate his time.

The Conservative member told the County Press: "I will not be standing for Isle of Wight Council but instead will concentrate all my efforts on Cowes Town Council where I feel my time and skill sets can be better utilised.

"Yachting in general has been severely hit by the pandemic, which has obviously had a serious knock-on effect on Cowes, with the cancellation of so many events in 2020.

"The promotion of Cowes in all its many facets (not just yachting) will be my main priority.

"My intention as a town councillor is to work closely with other major bodies in Cowes, such as Cowes Business Association, Harbour Commission, Yacht Haven, Cowes Week Ltd., Cowes Heritage and more.

"The pandemic has created many upsets, but it has also created many opportunities and I envisage all of the afore-mentioned bodies working together with the common aim of maintaining and improving all aspects of Cowes for the benefit of local residents and visitors alike.

"We are all planning for a vibrant summer season."

John Hobart

Isle of Wight County Press: Isle of Wight Councillor John Hobart

Carisbrooke and Gunville Councillor John Hobart has been on the Isle of Wight Council since 2009.

The Conservative member has been the Isle of Wight Council's cabinet member for environment and heritage and has served on the steering committee of the AONB (Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty) as well as the council's licensing committee.

He is one of the governors at Christ the King College and a Friend of Carisbrooke Castle Museum.

He has also been Newport and Carisbrooke Parish Council's planning committee.

He told the County Press: "I have really enjoyed my time as a county councillor - some 16 years, and a stretch before that as a founder member of Cowes Town Council.

"I’ve seen lots of changes over the years, some good… some bad and I have to say that the support of an excellent team of council officers over the years has been so important and I have learned so much.

"I am very proud to have done my last stint as cabinet member for environment and heritage.

"I really believe that both of these are incredibly important and I will always be supportive of this aspect of life on our Island.

"I particularly believe that we have to make environmental change now.

"We, as an Island, have been at the forefront of so much modern technology and this could be our opportunity to show the world what we are made of …. we can start this by cleaning up the sea around us.

"We have fantastic resources from places like the Oceanography Centre in Southampton, (quite aside from just doing everything we can as individuals to protect our landscape).

"I shall miss being a part of this as a councillor, but at 76 its definitely time to stop and make way for younger folk to take up the reins and get on with my much neglected garden!"

John Howe

Isle of Wight County Press:

A member of the Island Independent Group, John Howe represents Totland.

At nearly 80, he says it is time to take on something new and wants to dedicate his efforts to helping Totland bloom, including its new pier, facilities and businesses.

He says he wants to make the West Wight town the 'centre of things'.

John sits on Totland Parish Council (and has done for 50 years), is chair of trustees at West Wight Nursery, and also helps run Abbeyfield and the West Wight Sports Centre.

He told the County Press: "I've been on the council since 2000 - and I've loved every minute of it.

"I get on well with my fellow councillors and officers, who've been very helpful.

"Change is always good. You can't hang around forever.

"Being on the Isle of Wight Council gives you a buzz. If someone's got a problem and you can solve it, that makes you feel fantastic."

Stuart Hutchinson

Isle of Wight County Press: Isle of Wight Councillor Stuart Hutchinson

Deputy leader of the Isle of Wight Council, councillor Stuart Hutchinson has also been taking the lead on finances at County Hall.

In 2020, the Conservative member for West Wight was put in charge of Covid-19 recovery for the local authority.

Stuart has been Cabinet Member for Resources, served on the Appeals Committee, the Harbours Board, the Yarmouth Harbour Advisory Committee and was a member of the review boards for waste management and highways performance.

He has held a seat at the local authority since 2011, when he won a by-election and won re-election in 2017.

His large, rural ward encompasses Calbourne, Shalfleet and Yarmouth.

In 2020, he wrote that he was pleased to have secure restrictions on parking on the main road east of Yarmouth.

John Kilpatrick

Isle of Wight County Press: Isle of Wight Councillor John Kilpatrick

Binstead and Fishbourne member John Kilpatrick, Conservative, said it had never been his intention to stand at this election.

He said: "In my term as ward councillor, I’ve enjoyed helping tackle and resolve local issues.

"However, I've been equally frustrated by not achieving everything I set out to do.

"I’d like to wish whoever is elected as the Ward councillor every success in serving the Fishbourne and Binstead community."

Michael Muwill

Isle of Wight County Press: Isle of Wight Councillor Michael Murwill

Michael Murwill joined the Isle of Wight Council in May 2017, representing Brading, St Helens and Bembridge.

Originally a Conservative member, he currently sits as an independent.

Late last year, he was not re-approved to stand for the Conservatives.

Michael was appointed cabinet member for procurement, waste management and special projects in 2017.

He told the County Press: “My business commitments are such that I will not be standing at the forthcoming election May 6.

"As much as I enjoy helping people and representing their views at County Hall, my work ethic has always been to give 100% commitment.

"That is what the residents of Bembridge and the Island deserve.

"It is my belief that I have made a positive difference since being elected and have always strongly represented the local views and priorities: something I shall continue to do for the remainder of my term of office."

Councillor Murwill oversaw the introduction of the Household Garden Waste Scheme and under his tenure, the Isle of Wight moved from from 130th to 36th in the league table of UK local authorities recycling, reusing and composting household waste.

In 2018, he worked on the Plastic Free Island campaign, setting up and chairing the Community Plastic and Environmental Forum.

The initiative continued through the Environment and Sustainability Forum (ESF), working towards sustainability, decarbonisation and a circular economy.

He has been a governor at St Helen's Primary School and worked with charities and groups including Bembridge Football Club, Bembridge Heritage Centre and the Bembridge Youth and Community Centre.

He said: "I wish these organisations success and great support for 2021 and beyond.

"I would like to take this opportunity to thank the people of the ward; it has been a privilege to represent the ward as your county councillor.

"I wish health and happiness to you all for the future."

Wayne Whittle

Isle of Wight County Press: Isle of Wight Councillor Wayne Whittle

Wayne Whittle was elected to the Isle of Wight Council as a Conservative member representing Ryde North East, in 2009.

As a cabinet member, he has overseen Regeneration, Business Development, Tourism and Events.

The seafront business owner joined the Ryde forum over 20 years ago, to assist with its understanding of tourism, public realm, business and beaches.

Wayne spent five years as its chairman, was chairman of the Ryde Town management committee and later, mayor of Ryde.

He has also been the chairman of Ryde Business Association.

Speaking out to the Isle of Wight County Press, he said: "I was disappointingly obstructed over the last six years, from sitting on any working group, or committee, that considered tourism, business, public realm and regeneration in Ryde, on both Ryde Town Council and the Isle of Wight Council.

"It prevented me from properly representing my local residents' views and issues related to my coastal Ryde North East ward, that runs from Ryde pier to Appley Park and encompasses more than 70 per cent of the seafront public realm.

"So I have now decided it's time to hang up my rosette and from May 6 will be like a DFS sofa, totally interest free!

"Sadly, it appears the last thing local government wants is an elected member who talks about things they know and understand.

"It was a great pleasure to represent Ryde North East residents and community groups and do my best for the economy and community, fixing the flooding, keeping our pool open, celebrating the Ryde Slide and working to improve Ryde's prospects, as the vibrant, unique, much loved and historic "town on the beach"

"It has been great to see so many young candidates putting themselves forward. I'm so happy to make way for some new community champions, so will now be sitting back and enjoying the Ryde."