Labour chooses Morecambe election challenger

Vikki Singleton.
Vikki Singleton.

Labour has chosen its candidate for Morecambe and Lunesdale in the general election.

Mum-of-three Vikki Singleton has been selected to stand on June 8 against sitting Conservative MP David Morris.

Matt Severn.

Matt Severn.

Mrs Singleton, 33, was picked ahead of other applicants local councillors Darren Clifford and John Reynolds, subject to final approval from the party’s National Executive Committee on May 3.

She said she had a “close affiliation to Morecambe” having grown up in the area and been on Lancaster City Council, representing Westgate, from 2011 to 2015. She is currently a councillor for Blackpool Council.

“The people of Morecambe are passionate about where they live,” she said.

“People have big dreams for Morecambe and have an MP who doesn’t reflect that.”

Eric Ollerenshaw.

Eric Ollerenshaw.

Matt Severn will also be standing in Morecambe and Lunesdale for the Liberal Democrats.

Mr Severn, 30, was confirmed as Lib Dem candidate at a meeting at Skerton Liberal Club on Wednesday. The married dad-of-one grew up in Bolton-le-Sands and is now a district councillor in Kendal.

“The Liberal Democrats want to give people the chance to have a say on the final Brexit deal and we believe Britain should remain a member of the Single Market after Brexit,” he said.

“Morecambe and Lunesdale’s economy, based on things like Heysham Power Station, Heysham Port, farming and tourism, depends heavily on access and trade with our European partners.”

In Lancaster and Fleetwood, former Tory MP Eric Ollerenshaw will stand against sitting Labour MP Cat Smith.

“After the last election, it looked as though the constituency of Lancaster and Fleetwood might be abolished as a result of the boundary review and it didn’t look likely I would be able to have the chance to represent the area again,” said Mr Ollerenshaw, 67.

“However, with Theresa May having called an early general election on the existing boundaries, I am absolutely delighted to have this opportunity to win the seat back and to be back!”

Robin Long will stand for the Liberal Democrats in Lancaster and Fleetwood. Mr Long also stood in 2015, coming fifth.

The UK Independence Party and Green party had not announced their candidates for either local seat as we went to press.