Revealed - what Elizabeth Truss and other candidates spent on general election campaign trail in South West Norfolk

PUBLISHED: 08:27 04 August 2017 | UPDATED: 08:27 04 August 2017

Elizabeth Truss, MP for South West Norfolk. Picture: Ian Burt

Elizabeth Truss, MP for South West Norfolk. Picture: Ian Burt

Labour came close to matching the Conservatives’ spending on campaign materials in South West Norfolk - but the Tories still won double their votes when it came to the crunch.

Candidates’ expenditure for the constituency in the run up to June’s general election has just been published under electoral rules. Candidates were allowed to spend a maximum of £15,564.12 on campaigning in the constituency during the 25 days before polling day.

Accounts submitted to the returning officer show that Labour’s candidate Peter Smith spent £4,115 on “unsolicited material to electors”.

The term covers leaflets, posters and other campaign materials.

Mr Smith won 14,582 votes in the June 9 poll. He came second to sitting MP Elizabeth Truss, who polled 32,894.

Ms Truss spent £2,828.35 on unsolicited materials and £1,819 on advertising, her accounts reveal.

While Mr Smith’s total spending was confined to campaign materials, Ms Truss’s total of £6,059 also included agent and staffing costs of £1,234, accomodation and administration of £178.90 and a further £250 in what were described as personal expenses.

UKIPs David Williams, who came third with 2,575 votes, achieved by far the best value with his spending of just £200 on campaign materials.

That gave him a return of more than 12 votes for every pound he spent.

Liberal Democrat Stephen Gordon, who won 2,365 votes, spent £1,012.79 on unsolicited materials and £44.86 on accommodation and administration.

A note on the accounts says that Mr Gordon has been unable to sign his declaration because he has passed away since the election.

After a general election candidates’ agents must account for all of the costs of campaigning in the 25 days leading up to polling day, and any donations received in a spending return.

Returning officers must receive spending returns from all candidates by a certain date, which varies depending on the election. The accounts are then made available for public inspection.

Copies of candidates’ expenditure can be viewed at West Norfolk council’s offices in King’s Lynn during office hours.

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