Election candidates for Morecambe and Lunesdale will be seeking your vote next Thursday.
The country will vote in a general election for the third time in four years on December 12.
In Morecambe and Lunesdale, the candidates are Chloe Alexandra Germaine Buckley (Green Party), Darren Keith Clifford (Independent), Lizzi Collinge (Labour Party), Owen Thomas Lambert (Liberal Democrats) and David Thomas Morris (Conservative Party).
We gave each of them 300 words to tell you more about their policies and the election platform they are standing on.
GREEN PARTY CANDIDATE CHLOE BUCKLEY
Occupation: University lecturer
I live in Morecambe and work as a university lecturer. Our area is a great place to live, but it has been affected by a decade of austerity and let down by the current MP, David Morris, who has supported cuts to our services.
I’m standing as a Green candidate because I believe we need a different kind of politics to build a fairer and more sustainable society.
I also believe that remaining in the EU is vital to ensuring our prosperity and a bright future for young people.
As your Green MP, I will fight to secure the Eden Project with a zero carbon commitment and guaranteed jobs for local people.
I’ll campaign for more funding for local schools and public services. Conservative promises to fund schools and save the NHS ring hollow after years of failure on both issues.
Indeed, it’s hard to take the promises of any of the main parties seriously given the mess they have created over Brexit. The system is in crisis and the Green Party offer a proper alternative to politics as usual. As a Green candidate, I’m committed to making the voting system fairer so that everyone’s voice counts. A proportional system would ensure votes mattered and encourage cooperation and compromise rather than the destructive stalemate we’ve experienced in the years since the EU referendum.
Finally, we’ve seen first-hand how the climate crisis affects our homes and businesses in the north west. It’s essential that government, businesses and individuals take urgent action and I will make this my top priority. The Green New Deal devised by your Green Party representatives in the North West, including our fantastic MEP Gina Downing, promises sustainable public transport and Green jobs. We need more Green MPs in the UK parliament to make this happen and to hold other parties to account.
INDEPENDENT CANDIDATE DARREN CLIFFORD
Location: Skerton, Lancaster
I’m a proud Sandgrown’un having lived in the area all my life, other than my years in the army. I enlisted at the age of 16 and went on from combat medic to general nurse, psychiatric nurse and then on to Sandhurst where I commissioned from the ranks.
I’ve served in Germany, Northern Ireland, Falklands and Iraq. I’ve worked in both the NHS and private healthcare as well as a period running my own business. I’ve served our area on all three councils. While at County I won a national award for my work with Armed Forces Veterans, during my time on the Town Council I led the process of improving the festivals programme as well as addressing, in a small way, social issues like food poverty.
While on cabinet at City I invested in Salt Ayre, increased support for the arts, worked with residents to save community pools and brought the museums service back in house. I’m running in this election because both nationally and locally, we seem to be buried under a dark fog of partisanship and a brand of politics that’s just plain mean spirited. Typified by the kind of heartlessness on the right which is comfortable with millions using foodbanks. Or the fundamentalist militants of the left that are anti-business, anti-defence, mired by anti-Semitism and have turned a once great party from a working-class movement, into a middle-class talking shop.
I wonder if a guy armed with nothing more than his experience, faith in people, his conscience and a love of where he is from can change all that. A vote for me will get you an MP who will honour the 2016 Brexit Referendum, not because party bosses have said so, but because I believe in democracy. This uncertainty has gone on far too long. If you’re sick and tired of political back biting, of polarisation of politics to the point where “moderates” is a dirty word, then I’m your man.
LABOUR PARTY CANDIDATE LIZZI COLLINGE
Occupation: Mum, county councillor and activist.
I hope the people of Morecambe and Lunesdale will vote for me as a fresh voice for the constituency.
I live in Heysham with my husband and two kids and recently I worked for the NHS supporting relatives of people with serious mental illness.
I am also a County Councillor with a strong track record - securing bus routes, supporting elderly people to get care and stopping cuts for disabled kids.
I’m excited to go into this election with a clear vision for the future of Morecambe and Lunesdale.
A future where every child gets a great start, health is a priority, and everyone thrives - young or old, rich or poor.
We need a truly sustainable, low carbon, economy that has jobs for local people at the heart of it.
This is backed up by transformative Labour policies such as sorting out the NHS, the Green Industrial Revolution, free prescriptions and a living wage of £10 an hour, plus no tax increases for people earning under £80,000.
We’ll also ensure that local businesses have a level playing field with large companies by making sure the likes of Google and Amazon pay their fair share. Labour has also pledged to invest in the Eden project and I will ensure that it works for the benefit of everyone in the area.
The Conservative’s terrible record and the effect on people here speaks for itself.
People wait weeks for a GP appointment and months, if not years, for surgery.
Rural areas have been starved of public transport, children are living in poverty, and there are constant cuts to vital public services.
We have amazing communities in Morecambe and Lunesdale, who always pull together, but the Government and their MP haven’t supported them. I will always support everyone in the constituency.
LIBERAL DEMOCRATE CANDIDATE OWEN LAMBERT
Occupation: Campaigns and Communications - ALDC
I have grown up in Morecambe, worked locally in the NHS and actively campaigned for the residents of Morecambe.
I have seen the issues facing the town first-hand and is demanding better for its residents.
“Morecambe has been ignored by Westminster for far too long. They deserve better representation, by someone who has grown up here, seen and felt the issues”
Owen is committed to revitalising Morecambe; supporting local investment in tourism and events, small businesses and sustainability. He is particularly keen on encouraging more large-scale investments like that of the Eden Project, stating that
“Morecambe deserves 21st century attractions to be enjoyed by residents and visitors alike. Morecambe offers a unique experience within the North West; it is a hidden gem that needs to be rediscovered.”
He believes that sites, such as Frontier Land, should be rebuilt into something more fitting for a modern era.
“I feel the people of Morecambe’s frustration with the lack of development on the Frontier Land site. Our town needs strong investment to ensure that businesses come to Morecambe and stay in Morecambe.”
Owen will fight for immediate funding for health and social care within Morecambe. He is committed improving same-day-care and mental health services in the town, so that locals aren’t forced to travel to Lancaster to receive the help they need.
“Over the past three years, I have witnessed first-hand the problems facing our NHS. Lack of funding has brought the NHS to its knees; the Liberal Democrats are committed to investment in our public services across the board.”
“The people of Morecambe deserve an MP that they can rely on; an MP who will address local issues, listen to their concerns and bring the sunshine back to Morecambe.”
CONSERVATIVE PARTY CANDIDATE DAVID MORRIS
As your Member of Parliament for nine years I have overseen a transformation of our area.
I have secured over a billion pounds of investment across the Constiuency and delivered big projects such as the Link Road and the sea wall defences on the promenade amongst other things.
I am standing for re-election because I am just getting started on my plans to transform the area.
I have been working on securing the Eden Project for a couple of years and we are now in the advanced stages of getting the final sign off from Government. This project can’t go ahead without Government funding and I have the support of the Powerhouse Minister and the Prime Minister to make sure this goes ahead. The Prime Minister’s Brexit deal also means a Freeport in Heysham which will allow our Port to expand and will mean huge investment in our area.
Brexit is the most important issue of a generation and it is vital for the future of our democracy that the result of the referendum of 2016 is honoured.
The Country voted leave, the Lancaster District voted leave and Morecambe and Lunesdale voted leave.
I have used my vote in Parliament and always voted to ensure we leave the European Union.
I am supporting Boris Johnsons Brexit deal but I will vote for no deal if this deal fails.
I want us to leave and I will continue to use my vote in Parliament to make sure Brexit is delivered.
Since I have been your Member of Parliament Morecambe and Lunesdale has never seen so much investment.
The town is on the up and there is a buzz about the place.
Vote David Morris on the 12th December to allow me to continue to drive prosperity in my home of Morecambe and Lunesdale.