General election candidates for Fenland
The major parties have chosen who they want to stand in North East Cambridgeshire for the general election on June 8:
Steve Barclay (Conservative)
Mr Barclay won the seat in 2015 with more than 55 per cent of the vote, giving him a majority of 16,874.
He has campaigned on issues such as tackling modern slavery and retaining the local minor injury units. He has also publicly questioned what he perceives to be a lack of funding for Fenland from the local enterprise partnership.
He tweeted: “I am delighted to announce that I will be the @Conservatives candidate for NECambs #GE2017.”
It was not possible to contact Mr Barclay for further comment.
Ken Rustidge (Labour)
Mr Rustidge came third in the seat in the 2015 election.
He lives near Spalding and is a divisional officer and secretary of the National Union of Teachers in Lincolnshire, as well as a national executive member of the NUT in the East of England.
Dad-of-two Mr Rustidge, a veteran of the Iraq War, said: “I want to get the message across about the unfairness of funding, particularly with the cuts to schools. That’s something deeply worrying.
“At the same time, the Government has been giving tax cuts to millionaires. I want this message to be loud and clear in this election.
“Labour will make the decision to increase per pupil funding for future generations.
“I was just in Wisbech and people mentioned deep concerns with the National Health Service and closures of two hospitals, and the reduction of police.”
He added: “I’m aiming to do as well as I possibly can. I will be working tirelessly with a fantastic team of local people.”
Darren Fower (Liberal Democrat)
The Peterborough city councillor for Gunthorpe said: “I am very proud to be standing for the North East Cambs constituency.
“Areas like Wisbech, March, Whittlesey and Chatteris have for too long gone without a strong voice in Parliament.
“Locally, I’ll join fellow Lib Dems and battle to protect areas from huge, unsuitable development. For example, the Conservatives have proposed the new ‘Wisbech Garden Town’ meaning an extra 6,000 houses west of Wisbech on top of those already planned.
“This would mean Leverington and Peckover would be swamped by the housing and affect everyone in our area as we all use the town. It will increase congestion and put our services under even greater strain.
“It has also been said the extra housing is not for local people. Surely, we should provide housing for local people first!
“If I’m elected as the MP, I’ll keep in touch and be an active MP all year round, with constituents through newsletters, surveys, email, blogs and video.
“Labour have failed as an opposition and everyone knows they will be heavily beaten in the general election.
“If elected, I’ll be part of a stronger Lib Dem presence and will fight hard to hold the Conservative government to account.”
Robin Talbot (UKIP)
Mr Talbot has been married to wife Bernice for six years and they live in a local village just outside of March in the North East Cambridgeshire Fens.
Having travelled the world as part of a military family Robin took a natural career path which lead him to continuing the family tradition and joined the Royal Air Force specialising as a bomb disposal technician.
After an active career which included a tour of the Middle East in 2003, he said he was unable to extend his military career due to government cut backs and left in 2008.
He currently works providing mobile library services to local communities.
Robin joined UKIP in 2009 and stood in the 2010 general election for North East Cambridgeshire. He has also twice been elected as a local parish councillor.
Ruth Johnson (Green Party)
Miss Johnson said: “After a career in financial services, I am currently retraining in the education sector.
“As a mother to a young child, I hold dearly the values of the Green Party for our children’s future and the well-being of the nation. We must work hard to save the NHS from stealth privatisation and stop local hospitals from closure.
“We must strive for free education for all, and with Brexit on the horizon we must ensure that we build a better future where there is cleaner air, safer roads, better health and a tax and welfare system which works for the common good.
“I believe that only the Green Party can deliver on all of this.”
Stephen Goldspink (English Democrat)
Mr Goldspink is standing to “put England and the English nation first.”
The English Democrat stood in the recent election of a metro mayor for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, where he grabbed the headlines when he promised to invite President Trump to the county if elected.