Prime Minister Boris Johnson visits Hartlepool ahead of May by-election

Video report by Political Correspondent Tom Sheldrick

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has visited Hartlepool, lending his support to the Conservative campaign ahead of a by-election in the town next month.

Mr Johnson toured Hart Biologicals, a medical equipment manufacturer in the town.

It follows a visit to Hartlepool Power Station by Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer two days earlier.

Jill Mortimer, a farmer and a councillor in North Yorkshire, is standing for the Tories. She ran unsuccessfully for parliament in Leeds East in 2019.

Jill Mortimer

She will campaign to become the first Conservative MP for Hartlepool since the seat was created in 1974. 

The May 6 contest comes 14 months after large sections of Labour's so called "red wall" fell in the 2019 general election.

Speaking to ITV Tyne Tees Political Correspondent Tom Sheldrick, the Prime Minister acknowledged the challenge his party faces in winning the by-election, but said "this is a moment of change and opportunity".

He said: "What we want to do is focus on the needs of the people of Hartlepool."

Below is the list of candidates announced so far:

  • Conservatives - Jill Mortimer

  • Independent - Adam Gaines

  • Labour - Paul Williams

  • Liberal Democrats - Andy Hagon

  • North East Party - Hilton Dawson

  • Northern Independence Party - Thelma Walker

  • Reform UK - John Prescott

  • Social Democratic Party - David Bettney

  • Women's Equality Party - Gemma Evans

Nominations close on 8 April.

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