Church hosts general election hustings event

The six candidates standing for the Sleaford and North Hykeham seat in the General Election at the hustings in St Denys' Church. EMN-191126-155558001
The six candidates standing for the Sleaford and North Hykeham seat in the General Election at the hustings in St Denys' Church. EMN-191126-155558001

Around 80 people turned out on Sunday evening to hear what the six candidates standing in the General Election for Sleaford and North Hykeham constutuency had to say.

The election hustings event was chaired by Vicar of Sleaford and Rural Dean of Lafford, Rev Philip Johnson and was organised by Sleaford Churches Together.

Around 80 people attended the election hustings held in St Denys' Church, Sleaford on Sunday evening. EMN-191126-155547001

Around 80 people attended the election hustings held in St Denys' Church, Sleaford on Sunday evening. EMN-191126-155547001

Questions were received in advance from congregations of all the churches involved and put to the candidates in turn: Caroline Coram - Independent; Oliver Craven - Lib Dem; Dr Caroline Johnson - Con; Linda Edwards-Shea - Lab; Marianne Overton - Lincolnshire Independents; and Simon Tooke - Green.

Questions challenged candidates to give their views on how the Brexit referendum result could be resolved. Other key points looked at the pressing need to address climate change and deal with flooding problems locally, as well as issues such as social care and national security.

Rev Johnson said: “There was a great generosity of spirit and not a competitive feel about it at all.”

Caroline Coram claimed that the current Brexit deal could not be done in the one year time frame proposed. Simon Took said all other issues were secondary compared to the climate emergency which has been declared, and the country must act by 2030.

Oliver Craven wanted to build a modern Britain where the government was not pandering to big business elites.

Marianne Overton said as a local independent councillor she had great experience in negotiating better funding from ministers while representing local government.

Caroline Johnson said she hoped to deliver a Conservative majority in Parliament in order to deliver a Brexit deal by the end of January while delivering more police officers and funding for the bypasses around Lincoln and North Hykeham.

Linda Edwards-Shea wanted to bring about a green power industrial revolution bringing in thousands of new jobs to the area as well as improved local services.