Crowds at the election hustings in Lichfield Cathedral. Pic: Lewis Deakin

The parliamentary candidates for Lichfield and Burntwood have laid out their vision at the People InSpired election hustings.

Crowds at the election hustings in Lichfield Cathedral. Pic: Lewis Deakin
Crowds at the election hustings in Lichfield Cathedral. Pic: Lewis Deakin

The event ran from 6.30pm until 9pm yesterday with the candidates answering questions from the audience about issues such as the deficit, European Union, climate change and education.

Labour’s Chris Worsey believes the hustings proves that only his party can deliver for Britain after May 7.

He said: “I think this event demonstrates the engaged vibrant community we have here in Lichfield.

“This event, however, proved one thing – that the choice on May 7 is between a Labour government who will reduce the deficit fairly every year, or the Conservatives who will cut public services to the bone.”

However, Conservative Michael Fabricant said his party had delivered a recovery for all of Britain.

He added: “The Conservatives have created two million jobs and a recovery for all of Britain.

“We’ve seen what happens to countries who don’t pay their debts in Greece, Portugal, Italy and Spain, and if we hadn’t taken action we would have ended up just like them.”

Liberal Democrat Paul Ray  that his approach was just to be honest with the electorate.

He said: “I just wanted to be truthful and give straight answers on the EU or on HS2 – I wanted to strip away the political jargon and just to be honest and I feel I’ve achieved that.”

Class War Andy Bennetts admitted he had enjoyed the evening.

Mr Bennetts said: “I enjoyed debating with the other candidates and I feel the audience got the message that it’s a waste of time to vote on May 7.”

The Green Party’s Robert Pass believes he made the audience consider a vote for him.

He said: “I feel I performed well and got across the real issues to the people at Lichfield Cathedral. I feel they engaged really well with all of us and were receptive to the Green Party.”

UKIP’s John Rackham believes his party’s message is hitting home with voters.

He said: “I thought the event was good and I really enjoyed it. I would have liked more time to answer the questions, but I believe UKIP did well.”

Lichfield Revd Dean and chair of People InSpired Adrian Dorber thanked the politicians for their attendance.

Mr Dorber added: “This event was about giving the public the opportunity to engage in the democratic process.

“I thought the politicians did well and engaged with each other and the public really well. I hope we can invite the elected candidate to speak here again some time after the May 7 election.

Lewis Deakin

NCTJ-trained reporter with experience in a wide variety of journalism settings.

4 replies on “Election candidates go head-to-head at hustings event”

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  1. Fabricant and Bennetts were the only two candidates who really said what they thought. The others stuck to their party lines. The UKIP bloke actually read from their manifesto at times! Poor. Very poor.

    The UKIP candidate got a laugh when he said UKIP would keep their eye on climate change.

  2. I thought Fabricant was awful, he came across as pompous and out of touch.

    For me Andy Bennett and Robert Pass both spoke from the heart and were the most engaging.

  3. It was an enjoyable event, I wasn’t lynched, which was nice. I’ve got to say that having chatted with Rob Pass I don’t think he is simply following a party line. He genuinely believes what he’s saying. That’s not to say I agree with him but I don’t doubt his sincerity.

  4. Fabricant not only became more pompous and patronizing as the event went on I found some of his comments amazing. He claimed that the massive increase in the use of food banks from 10,000 in 2010 to 1 million in 2015 was simply because the Tories had “advertised their existence” whereas Labour had tried to hide them ! Then he suggested the gap between rich and poor had closed over the last few years, quoting a report by the Joseph Rowntree org. I have yet to find any reference to such a report. Like his party the man seems totally out of touch.

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