Welcome to The Conversation: Which party leader would you trust to sell you a used car?

  • Video report and words by ITV News Reporter Ben Chapman

Which party leader would you trust to sell you a used car?

The two women printing off the number plates are not convinced by any of them.

But there’s one thing they are looking for: some stability. In that, they sum up the mood in this giant warehouse, full of second-hand BMWs.

Here, they drive them in, identify faults, fix them up, clean them out and move them on. The process is quick and efficient, at a rate of 120 cars per day.

There is frustration that by contrast, after more than three years, Brexit still hasn’t been sorted out.

Workers want certainty over Brexit and job security. Credit: ITV News

Laura lost her job at Thomas Cook earlier this year and is desperate for some certainty.

“It was really nerve-wracking and scary,” she tells me. “I need to be reassured our jobs will be safe.”

If this is the Brexit election, it is certainly top of the agenda here.

The car supermarket group, Big Motoring World, opened its huge Car Preparation Centre in June, the same month the Brexit Party came within 683 votes of beating Labour in the Peterborough by-election.

What Nigel Farage’s supporters do this time could determine the outcome in what is also a Conservative target seat. 61% of people in the city voted to leave the EU.

Darryl is backing Boris Johnson despite voting for the Brexit Party six months ago. Credit: ITV News

I spoke to Darryl, who voted for the Brexit Party less than six months ago.

But this time, he and his body shop colleague Wayne are backing Boris Johnson.

“I don’t think Farage is going to be there in the long run,” says Wayne. “I don’t think he’s the right man to take the country forward after Brexit.”

“Working class people warm to Johnson,” replies Darryl. “They like what he says and they like what he does.”

His view is borne out in this giant warehouse filled with mechanics, technicians and valets: men you’d expect to be traditional Labour voters. But no one we approached said they were voting for the party.

Carlton is a lifelong Labour supporter who is going to vote Green this election. Credit: ITV News

The closest we came was Carlton, a lifelong Labour supporter, who for the first time is abandoning the party for the Greens. He cares about the environment but is also annoyed by what he sees as Jeremy Corbyn’s backtracking on Brexit.

“Promises, promises, promises. You can promise a lot but you’ve got to deliver,” he tells me, driving a now-pristine Range Rover out of the workshop.

“It doesn’t matter what Boris puts forward, they’ll always vote against it. Always.”

This is one workplace, in one town, where political labels are less predictable than they once were.

And it is Brexit that remains the driving force behind how people will vote.

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