Thornbury and Yate general election 2019 candidates
VOTERS in the Thornbury and Yate constituency will have just three candidates to choose from when they go to the polls on December 12 for the country's third general election in less than five years.
Only the Conservatives, Liberal Democrats and Labour are standing candidates after the Greens agreed to drop out of the contest in a pact with the Lib Dems – then the Brexit Party unilaterally withdrew from all Tory-held seats.
It is the first time for more than 30 years the only three parties have stood in the constituency, which includes Frampton Cotterell, Coalpit Heath and Iron Acton.
In 2010, the year Thornbury and Yate replaced the Northavon constituency, there were six candidates, including two independents. UKIP and the Greens stood in 2015, while in 2017 the Greens contested the seat alongside the Tories, Lib Dems and Labour.
The Greens' national agreement with the Lib Dems, called Unite to Remain, aims to give pro-remain candidates a better chance of winning marginal seats against Labour or Tory MPs.
In 2017 the Greens came fourth in Thornbury and Yate: their candidate received just 633 votes from a total turnout of 50,690. Their votes would not have changed the result, as Conservative Luke Hall's majority over the second-placed Lib Dems was 12,071.
Luke Hall has been the MP for Thornbury and Yate since 2015, when he defeated Liberal Democrat Steve Webb, who had won the seat at the first general election after its creation in 2010 and had held the previous Northavon seat since 1997. The Liberal Democrats came second in 2017.
The Voice has asked every candidate nominated in the election to tell us about themselves and their aims.
They are included here in the order they will appear on the ballot paper.
Luke Hall – Conservative
"As a father who has lived locally all my life, I use the same roads, medical facilities and bus services as everybody in our community, and I have a Positive Plan for the future of South Gloucestershire.
"We are already making progress on the plan; protecting green spaces by defeating the plans to build thousands of houses at Thornbury, Charfield and Coalpit Heath, delivering better local health services by upgrading the Yate Minor Injuries Unit, funding transport infrastructure by scrapping the Severn Bridge Tolls and building a Yate Park and Ride.
"We are delivering better broadband; 96% of local homes now have a good connection, increasing school funding and special educational needs funding, with a 5.3% and 8.6% per pupil rise this year, and supporting the local economy with record low unemployment.
"There is more to do. If we deliver Brexit, we can move on and build new Health Centres at Frenchay and Thornbury, deliver Charfield Railway station and junction 18A onto the M4. We will build two new primary schools in Yate, redevelop Castle School, we will keep business rates low and connect the remaining 4% of homes with good broadband.
"Support me to deliver this Positive Plan."
Robert Logan - Labour
“I have lived in the Bristol area for 13 years. We moved here when my eldest daughter was born, because my wife's family has lived in or around Thornbury for over 35 years.
"I have been a member of the Labour Party for over twenty years. The Party has changed a lot in that time, but the fundamental values remain.
"Ultimately everyone joins Labour because they believe in social justice, but the reasons why are often very personal. Mine is my grandfather, a working class boy who'd grown up in the Black Country in the 1920s, who later became a Church of England vicar. He told me what Britain was like for his family before the NHS – he lost his brothers in childhood from diseases that don't kill people any more, and he lost his mother to what was then called 'exhaustion'. Can you imagine how horrendous this must have been? But what struck me most was that he was never bitter or angry – he just remembered that world, and wanted to work for a better world where every human being is valued and given the chance to thrive and contribute to society. That's still my aim."
Claire Young – Liberal Democrats
"I'm standing for Parliament to stop the Brexit mess so we can focus on what really matters – tackling climate change, getting proper funding for our schools and health services and building a fairer society that works for everyone.
"I have a record of action working with local people across the constituency. Together we've secured wins like longer opening hours at Yate Minor Injury Unit and cheaper bus fares in our towns. I led a team at the inquiry opposing the Conservatives' unsustainable plans for large-scale housing on our green fields – we need truly affordable, zero carbon homes and greener transport. I recently brought people together cross-party to declare a Climate Emergency locally.
"With two sons at local schools, I have campaigned alongside other parents for better funding for our schools. I worked in the software industry locally and am determined to ensure that people of all ages can get the skills they need to access the high-tech opportunities on our doorstep.
"Having lived here for twenty years and served as a councillor for twelve, I'm committed to fighting for our area. With your support on 12th December, we can build a brighter future for Thornbury & Yate and our country."