General Election 2015 – Profile of Blackpool North and Cleveleys

Sue Close ' Liberal Democrat
Sue Close ' Liberal Democrat
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Paul Maynard secured the Blackpool North and Cleveleys seat for the Conservatives in 2010 with a majority of 2,150 following a change to the boundaries of the constituency.

The old Blackpool North and Fleetwood seat had been held by Labour’s Joan Humble since 1997, but she stood down at the last election. The seat crosses two boroughs – Blackpool and Wyre – and a key issue recently for residents in Cleveleys has been the withdrawal of free tram travel on the Blackpool tramway. Turnout in 2010 was 40,591, with the swing to the Conservatives + 6.9.

Paul Maynard – Conservative

All elections are a choice, both national and local.

After five years as your MP, I’m keen to continue serving all my constituents, and working on the issues great and small that can make a difference to all our lives.

In this constituency, we’ve seen a steady fall in unemployment, a halving of youth unemployment, and steady growth in private sector jobs.

But there is always more to do to bring the high-skilled, well-paid jobs we need locally to make us a more prosperous community.

I’ve already succeeded in winning the funding for the new A585 relief road, but the task of improving our north-south infrastructure locally is a big project.

We have outstanding sixth form and FE colleges in the constituency, but I want to accelerate improvements to our local secondary schools so our young people can make the most of their educational potential.

And, whatever age we are, I want to keep campaigning for a town centre in Blackpool which welcomes tourists and residents alike, and where Cleveleys continues to be a popular shopping destination.

And yes, that means keeping up the fight to find a solution that sees Wyre pensioners able to use their concessionary cards on the trams.

And, as your MP, I always remember who I serve, which is why I don’t believe MPs need an 11 per cent pay rise, and if I do get it, the post-taxation extra will go to projects supporting young people and tackling loneliness among the elderly.

Sam Rushworth – Labour

For too long the gap between the richest few and millions of ordinary hard working families has been growing, and places like Blackpool have been left behind with 10 per cent fewer jobs over the past decade and an NHS under strain.

Six years ago I was working evenings and weekends at a supermarket while studying full-time for a Masters Degree as I strived to provide a better life for my young family.

Today, the hourly rate at the same supermarket is barely 20p higher, but the cost of everything from energy and child care to rent has sky-rocketed.

New jobs are mainly insecure self-employment or low and zero-hour contracts. Under the Tories, Britain has become the land of the pay day loan, the bedroom tax and the food bank.

As a proud local lad, I believe Blackpool and Cleveleys can be better.

So when our Tory MP voted in parliament to make millions pay more in higher VAT while giving big tax cuts to millionaires, I decided to stand up for local working people and pensioners and offer myself as the Labour candidate.

If you elect me I will be a man of action, not just words and glossy leaflets, and when I vote in parliament I will always put you first.

That means action to deal with the cost-of-living crisis; tougher controls on immigration; investing in an NHS that guarantees the right to GP appointments within 48 hours and cancer tests within one week; backing the next generation with new gold-standard technical degrees and cuts to tuition fees; a triple lock on pensions; and balancing the books in a fairer way.

Sue Close – Liberal Democrat

Lib Dems in government will continue our policies of ‘Hope not Hatred’.

We will introduce a further increase in the personal allowance to £12,500 by 2020 to ensure lower-paid workers escape from income tax, oppose reductions in local government block grant which have brought about library closures and reduced public services, increase by £2.5bn more than Labour and £5bn more than the Tories education funding for two to 19-year-olds.

As the first party to promise the £8bn assessed by the CEO of NHS England as needing to be found over the next Parliament, we shall ensure we identify savings elsewhere as well as in the NHS itself.

We will work to reform the so-called ‘bedroom tax’ so existing social housing tenants would not lose benefit unless they turn down a reasonable offer of alternative accommodation, insist on a Nature Act setting out a 25-year plan for ‘recovering nature’ such as reversing the present sharp decline in UK native species, and finance up to 15 hours of free childcare so that parents may increase family income by working if they choose to do so.

Other policies include new Rent-to-Own homes and assistance with low-interest loans to pay tenancy deposits for people just entering the housing market, and a Digital Bill of Rights to block any attempts for a Snoopers’ Charter.

Only as a full member of a reformed EU can we be certain Britain’s businesses will have access to markets in Europe and worldwide.

Simon Noble – UKIP

I have had a rewarding campaign to date with a good volume of support.

To my personal surprise most people indicating their support are ex-Labour.

We have a good team in Blackpool North and Cleveleys with people out most evenings and weekends.

The UKIP North West conference at the Norbreck Hotel was very well attended and proved to be an excellent spur to us all to go on and get out there gathering support.

I work as a solicitor specialising in immigration, which has given me a clear insight into the true picture regarding control of our borders

I passionately believe in the aim of regaining our sovereignty together with control of our borders to put the ‘great’ back into Britain by exiting the EU at the earliest opportunity.

In Blackpool, while the Conservative Government is readily handing out billions in overseas aid we have witnessed the closure of the police station in Cleveleys and now the ludicrous proposal by Blackpool Council to build a hotel adding unnecessary competition to the Blackpool hotel trade.

UKIP is the party of common sense committed to putting an end to the squandering of our resources.

John Warnock – Green Party

I became involved in politics because I was fed up of politicians tinkering around the edges when we need a complete new direction addressing the fundamental causes of our economic and environmental problems.

Education, health, housing and energy policies are all failing us because the other parties’ answer is to leave these to market forces, and privatise vital services.

My priorities for Blackpool North and Cleveleys are the NHS and promoting the local economy.

Patient care has been damaged by setting of arbitrary targets and over-management concentrating on achieving those targets, rather than directing resources to health treatment and staffing.

It is no wonder large numbers of professionals are taking early retirement.

The Green Party will repeal the Health and Social Care Act 2012 and introduce an NHS reinstatement bill, reversing privatisation of services and revitalising primary and community care.

To boost the local economy the Green Party would create one million climate jobs.

Blackpool and the Fylde has huge potential to benefit. We will end austerity and introduce a living wage of £10 per hour.

We can’t tackle poverty when our laws are made by the well-off for the benefit of the rich, widening the gap between rich and poor.

The Green Party is committed to a fairer society. Our measures to help achieve this include abolishing the bedroom tax and student loans.

James Walsh – Northern Party

Blackpool’s motto is ‘Progress’ and it is time for the potential of this glorious coastal area to be fulfilled and for us to achieve real progress.

I believe I am in a unique position to take Blackpool North and Cleveleys to the next level.

I have international tourism qualifications, years of promotional experience, an Ecology degree and have spent many years researching Lancashire’s unique environment.

Blackpool needs to tap into green funding streams, embrace renewable energy, provide new green jobs, educate people on the nature that is on their own doorstep and build a plan to create a sustainable future that considers fully the implications of dirty industry, climate change and possible sea-level rise.

Tourism is key to Blackpool and I believe it is important to improve the experience for families, especially children.

I believe that eco-tourism is key to rejuvenating the area.

Luckily, eco-tourism is a year-round industry and can provide sustainable jobs for the people of the Fylde.

The Northern Party has a fresh attitude to politics.

We believe that it is time to embrace common sense policies that benefit the North’s environment, people and economy.

General Election 2015 – Profile of Lancaster and Fleetwood

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