Invest in the road, train and bus network in Sleaford and North Hykeham, Labour’s Shadow Transport Secretary is saying during his visit to the constituency today (Monday).
Joining Labour’s candidate for Thursday’s Sleaford and North Hykeham by-election, Jim Clarke, Andy McDonald has been in the constituency to call for more to be done to tackle the current infrastructure problems facing local people in the town.
He says that for too long the area has been let down by Tory MPs and a Tory Government, and that more needs to be done to tackle the growing problems with the areas roads, rail links and bus routes.
He is supporting Labour’s Jim Clarke in calling for more funding for the area to tackle these problems and the candidate that will campaign for a fair funding for Sleaford and North Hykeham.
He will be followed by UKIP’s former leader Nigel Farage, fresh from his visit to the US to meet President-elect Donald Trump. He will be in the Market Place from 2.30pm this afternoon with UKIP candidate Victoria Ayling and later at a public meeting in Sleaford Legionnaire’s Club (doors open at 6.30pm for 7.30pm start).
Tim Farron, Leader of the Liberal Democrats, who visited the town on Friday afternoon to speak at Sleaford Town FC, has been joined by former party Leaders Nick Clegg, Ming Campbell and Paddy Ashdown in backing their candidate, Ross Pepper.
In their letter they sa: “It has just emerged that the NHS has suspended the Neurology units in Lincolnshire at Lincoln, Grantham and Boston Pilgrim Hospitals due to staffing issues.
“This follows the closure of Grantham Hospital Accident and Emergency Unit after 6.30pm every evening. Further, since April, ambulances have had to wait outside Lincoln Hospital for between two and four hours on over 400 occasions.”
They write: “We make an impassioned and unprecedented plea. You, local residents, do not have to put up with the Government underfunding and undermining your NHS services.”
They said: ““The Conservative Party has taken you for granted for too long. This level of service is worrying, dangerous and putting lives at risk. You deserve better and the Government needs to stop and listen to you.”
The Monster Raving Loony Party’s leader, Howling Lord Hope is due to visit the town on Wednesday to support his party candidate, Peter E Hill (The Iconic Arty Pole) just days after coming a shock fourth in the Richmond Park by-election, just behind Labour.
Following the Lib Dem overturn of a 23,000 majority, Lincolnshire Independents’ candidate and leader Marianne Overton has warned that anything could happen in the Sleaford and North Hykeham by-election, which was triggered following the surprise resignation of Tory MP, Stephen Philips.
She emphasised her experience as a district and county councillor and vice-chairman of the Local Government Association gave her a unique strength to negotiate effectively for Lincolnshire and the country, backed by a strong network of residents and colleagues.
She said: “Together we have done a huge amount at town, district and county level. We need to overturn a ‘safe seat’ to get the local funding that we desperately need here in Sleaford and North Hykeham. This by-election is different. It is not about who will run the country, it is about who will best represent and support you in the Sleaford & North Hykeham area.”
She said there is only one reliabel candidate who actually lives and works in the heart of the constituency, long term, winning ten elections over 25 years.
Coun Overton said: “Free from party political control, I listen carefully, look at the facts and focus on benefitting residents.
“I work with ministers and members of the House of Lords, a third of whom are Independent, to get improvements in the laws for our residents. “For example, extra rural funding, funding for our police, metal theft laws and currently getting the best outcomes from the Brexit.
“Rooted in our communities, only a determined Lincolnshire Independent can fight effectively for more of the funding for services and against massive housing developments without matching support. That Whitehall policy of increasing migration into the area at the same time as cutting our funds is seriously damaging. It is propped up by local big party members, and leads to poorer roads and services, travelling further for a school place, traffic congestion and longer ambulance waiting times. We deserve better. Independent MP’s such as Martin Bell said he found he was more effective as an Independent than as a party back-bencher, able to work cross-party and maintain integrity and gain respect.”
* The full list of candidates standing in the by-election on December 8 are: Dr Caroline Johnson (Conservative), Jim Clarke (Labour), Ross Pepper (Liberal Democrat), Victoria Ayling (UKIP), Paul Coyne (Non allighned), Marianne Overton (Lincolnshire Independent), Mark Suffield (Indepdent), Sarah Stock (Independent), Peter E Hill - the Iconic Arty Pole (Monster Raving Loony Party), David Bishop (Bus Pass Elvis Party).