Parliamentary candidates conclude their Banbury campaigns

Banbury’s other parliamentary candidates spoke about their respective campaigns before the declaration was announced this morning (Friday).

Conservative candidate Victoria Prentis was confirmed as the new MP for Banbury with 30,749 votes more than seven hours after voting closed at 10pm last night (Thursday).

People counting the votes during this morning's parliamentary election at Spiceball Leisure Centre. NNL-150805-111807001

People counting the votes during this morning's parliamentary election at Spiceball Leisure Centre. NNL-150805-111807001

Sean Woodcock of Labour came in second with 12,354 votes and speaking before the declaration, he said: “It has been a brilliant campaign. I have managed to speak to a lot of people in the town and am really grateful for the help from my party supporters which has been excellent.

“It has also been great fun, especially speaking to young people in the area who want a representative at parliament who will assist them in matters. During my campaign the concerns of the town was something I was aware of, including health, traffic and infrastructure and linking them into national issues.”

Ian Middleton of the Green Party received 2,686 of the votes and said his campaign was ‘hard work but good fun’. He added: “There was a big focus on local issues such as the NHS and the Horton General Hospital but the thing that was really impressive was the engagement of young people in the schools. It has been 30 years since I stepped inside an educational establishment but I really enjoyed the hustings events, especially at the Warriner School in Bloxham.

“I want to look at more options throughout the year to help engage more young people, rather than every five years.”

Liberal Democrat candidate John Howson stood for Reading East back in 2005 and said he has learnt a lot about Oxfordshire during his 2015 campaign. He said: “We are now doing far more to contact our voters now, especially with the help of social media although there are some people in my age group less likely to use it. I have answered more than 800 emails and attended ten hustings events.

“It has been a very interesting campaign; it has deepened my knowledge of the county and particular issues about the education that I will follow up after the election. I have concerns about some of the primary education results.”

UKIP candidate Dickie Bird finished third in the Banbury constituency with 8,050 votes and said: “I have had a really good campaign and had some really encouraging feedback when knocking on the doors which has been great.

“I noticed there was some big concerns by residents such as overdevelopment. They understand there is a lack of infrastructure to support potential housing for 22,000 people; it is really refreshing. We have got six candidates who care passionately about the constituency and whoever gets elected will do a great job.”