Target Norfolk? Labour party has its sights on county seats

PUBLISHED: 06:30 10 January 2013 | UPDATED: 17:10 10 January 2013

Jess Asato, Labour Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for Norwich North.

Jess Asato, Labour Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for Norwich North.

©2012Geoff Wilson

Labour has named Tory and Liberal Democrat seats in Norfolk high on a list of targets which if won would deliver the party a victory at the 2015 general election.

Norwich South, Norwich North, Great Yarmouth and Waveney were amongst 106 key target seats which the party aims to take to secure a 60- seat majority in the House of Commons.

Clive Lewis, Labour’s candidate for Norwich South which is sixth on the target list, said: “It’s very encouraging to see Norwich being prioritised as a key battleground in the forthcoming general election.

“But we’re taking nothing for granted. We know we have to work hard to regain the trust of voters and that won’t happen without hard work and policies that tackle social justice, the environment and the long-term economic direction of our country.”

Meanwhile, Jessica Asato, candidate for Norwich North which is 67 on the list, said: “Norwich North is a seat that Labour is determined to win back and its inclusion on the party’s target list is a sign that we will fight for every vote.”

Under the bold plan published this week Labour expects all of its current 255 MPs to hold their seats. Meanwhile, they will focus political and financial resources on the 86 Tory seats, 16 Lib Dem seats, two Welsh and one Scottish seat.

Among notables Labour wants to unseat are the Green Party’s only MP Caroline Lucas and Liberal Democrat deputy leader Simon Hughes.

Lib Dem Norwich South MP Simon Wright argued that voters would give the government credit for lowering unemployment and reducing the deficit. He said: “The list was compiled on the basis of swings and Norwich South was a very tight contest in 2010, so it’s not surprising at all to find the constituency as a target seat. It’s going to be a tight fight at the next election.”

Labour’s election chief, Tom Watson, said the list of battlegrounds did not include every seat the party would target and it would be reviewed to take account of opinion polls, elections results and campaign activity on the ground.

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