Meet the South Shields General Election candidates

Top (l-r) Lisa Nightingale, Shirley Ford, Robert Oliver. Bottom (l-r) Emma Lewell-Buck, Gita Gordon, Norman Dennis.
Top (l-r) Lisa Nightingale, Shirley Ford, Robert Oliver. Bottom (l-r) Emma Lewell-Buck, Gita Gordon, Norman Dennis.
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THE South Shields General Election candidates try to temp you to vote for them:

Norman Dennis (UKIP)

My message to the people of South Shields is very simple. Believe in Britain, Believe in South Shields, but most importantly Believe in yourself.

If you vote for Labour in this general election it will just be a drop in the ocean, just one more seat in Westminster. But I believe if you vote for NORMAN DENNIS and UKIP you would make history after 80 years of Labour domination. This election is not just about Westminster but most importantly it’s about the people of South Shields and telling the council that we want our voice to be heard loud and clear. How many times have I been told by the Labour Party it will be close but you will not win. It is not for me to predict the outcome of this general election, it is the people of a South Shields who will decide. Please come out and vote on the seventh of May. Let’s not just make history but let South Shields be part of it.

Yours in politics.

Shirley Ford (Green)

I care passionately about South Shields, my home now for 17 years. I moved to join my husband here, coming back to my roots, having North East parents, and our son is at the local comprehensive school. I am standing for both social justice and protecting our environment.

I work in a local primary school office as an administrator and see every day the struggles that parents have with the impact of austerity. Austerity has been a smokescreen for a huge shift of wealth to the rich and big business. We need to reverse this and, by those who can afford it paying their taxes, invest in the services we all rely on, like our NHS and education, and in the jobs we need. The government must invest in the right kind of jobs for the common good, eg if we super-insulate every home we bring down people’s fuel bills, tackle climate change and create good skilled jobs.

Our town needs support for local shops, small, independent and family businesses, like reform of business rates and rent controls. Our green spaces, riverside and seafront must be protected from damaging plans eg underground coal gasification along our beautiful coastline.

I urge you to vote for the Greens here if you share our values and ideas – this election is a real chance for change, so please vote for what you believe in.

Lisa Nightingale (Independent)

For several years I have been heavily active in the community of South Shields supporting numerous groups and charities.

South Shields is where I was born and where I grew up and I have great passion for the area – which is why I have devoted so much of my own time to helping others within the town.

I’m just like everyone else who has become disheartened with the direction the town is going. And why am I standing? It is simply a case of shut up and put up or try to do something about it. And I believe I have the drive, the determination, the fight and the passion to make a difference.

Gita Gordon (liberal Democrat)

This election campaign shows that there are still many voters undecided about which party offers a better future.

As a candidate, I’ve been struck by the large numbers of people who feel that the political system is broken in South Shields. The Labour Party has dominated for years but little has changed or improved. The Conservatives seem to know little and care less about South Shields. UKIP are simply trying to exploit dissatisfaction by scapegoating immigrants and Europe. I believe if South Shields votes for more of the same it will just end up getting the same complacent local political leadership.

As Liberal Democrat candidate I am actively engaging with local voters to offer a progressive alternative which focuses on people and renewal of the physical and social fabric of South Shields. My focus is on policy priorities like improving mental health provision, increasing local apprenticeships, improving care for the elderly, and safeguarding spending on education and the NHS. If you want a candidate who is different, who cares passionately about people and who wants to do more to reach out to the disillusioned and disadvantaged as well as the mainstream, please vote for me.​

Robert Oliver (Conservative)

On May 7th there is a clear choice for the people of South Shields: competence or chaos. The last Labour Government left the UK with “no money left” as they admitted, with thousands of workless families and appalling scandals in the NHS, and now is no time to hand the keys back to the people who crashed the car.

Since 2010, a Conservative-led coalition has started the economic revival of the North East by reforming welfare to make work pay; helping people into work with employment at its highest regional level and spending more on the poorest school children than ever with 40,815 more pupils in good or outstanding schools.

We need to continue building a strong economy to fund our public services, especially the NHS. Since 2010, there are 588 more doctors and 243 more nurses in the North East and patient satisfaction is at its second highest level on record. But only the Conservatives are committed to the extra £8billion needed in the next few years for our healthcare.

Much has been achieved so far but there is also much to do to secure a strong economy and a fair society for everyone. Only a Conservative government will deliver this for the people of South Shields.

Emma Lewell-Buck (Labour)

It has been a great honour to represent the place I was born in and live in, and a pleasure working for Shields every day since I was elected two years ago.

Voters who look at my record will see that I have successfully taken constituents’ issues all the way to the top, and that I have made sure the things that affect people right here in Shields are put on the Government’s agenda. As promised, I have been Shields’ voice in Westminster, not Westminster’s voice in Shields.

If you vote for me as your MP, you also get our country one step closer to a Labour government that will make our country fairer, unlike the Tories who only represent a few at the top. I believe that our country only works when the economy works for everyone and public services are strong, so we need a Labour government that will raise the National Minimum Wage, rescue our NHS, create a Jobs Guarantee to help people into work, and abolish the cruel and unfair Bedroom Tax. Nothing matters more to me and to my party than giving families security and opportunity, and that will be our number one priority if you help to elect a Labour government on Thursday.