Lib Dem hopeful: 'This is not about Sir Norman anymore'
PUBLISHED: 06:00 28 November 2019
The Liberal Democrat election hopeful in North Norfolk has urged people to send her to Westminster on December 12 instead of a Conservative who "would not challenge their own ministers".
Karen Ward is hoping to see off the Tory bid to snatch North Norfolk and she is confident of hanging on to the vital 'Norman factor' votes.
Sir Norman Lamb built up a loyal following after winning the seat in 2001 but the Conservatives believe a lot of people who voted for him are natural Tories.
Their candidate Duncan Baker believes the so-called 'Norman factor' is fading.
Ms Ward, a former senior civil servant who spent five years working in Westminster, said: "When it comes down to it this is not about Norman - he has retired. It is about the four candidates that are standing. I believe I am the best candidate.
"The risk is if we get a Conservative MP they are not going to challenge their own ministers. We need a shift in policy for things to get done here. We need more devolved powers to get our plan regarding transport and housing through.
"I have lived in North Norfolk since 2002 I moved here to raise my family. I became involved in local politics in 2016. But I have always been involved in community leadership roles.
"After joining the district council I was quite shocked. My thinking was that everyone would work together for the best outcome for the community. But I discovered there was very tribal party politics. I see my local political role very much as community leadership very much like when I was a school governor or a trustee of a charity - it is about putting something back.
"I know how to speak up for people who are trying to battle their way through the system."
In a direct attack on her opponents Ms Ward highlighted her previous career and slammed some of the manifesto pledges of the other parties: "I am more credible than the other candidates. I know Westminster.
"The manifesto promises from some of the parties are insane. On the door step people are saying 'this is ridiculous'. Ours has been fully costed and it is the best for North Norfolk - that matters to me."
Other candidates standing in North Norfolk include: Duncan Baker (Con), Emma Corlett (Lab) and Harry Gwynne (Brexit).