Politicians across the West Country have told ITV News about the rise in abuse they are facing during the election campaign.
We spoke to candidates in the Plymouth Sutton & Devonport and Bath constituencies - two key West Country battleground areas. With a week until the polls open, they told us of the abuse they've had to endure.
The 2019 General Election campaign is the first one in which police have given advice on such a wide scale. Speaking to politicians, the debate is whether it is social media or Brexit that has fuelled the fire to what has been regularly referred to as a "toxic" campaign.
MPs have been warned for the first time not to go out campaigning alone in the dark as threats and abuse have piled up.
With reports of an MP earlier this year receiving 2,000 abusive messages via social media in one week alone, some nights getting 100 an hour, the climate for candidates certainly seems tense.
A hundred years ago Nancy Astor took her seat in Plymouth Sutton & Devonport as the first woman MP. She faced abuse and discrimination at the time, and as ITV News has been finding out, that hostility on the streets continues for candidates today.
Candidates have told us how they are are seeing an increase in hostility to politicians and online abuse.
The Liberal Democrat Candidate for Plymouth Sutton & Devonport praised the advice he had been given by the police.
Graham Reed said: "When I first was asked to stand for the party in Plymouth Sutton & Devonport we received some very good and very positive briefings from the Devon and Cornwall police in the form of a letter. The advice that they gave us was first class and I think very valuable for all the candidates."
He went on to say:
More than 50 MPs have decided to stand down at this election with a large proportion saying the harassment they have received was a key reason.
The Conservative candidate for Plymouth Sutton & Devonport spoke of how it gets "quite challenging" but she has "methods of dealing with it". She said:
Plymouth Sutton & Devonport's Labour candidate Luke Pollard received abuse which reflects the divisive atmosphere.
On more than one occasion this year the former MP had his city centre office vandalised with homophobic graffiti.
At the beginning of this campaign Pollard ensured all his staff had panic alarms and received advice from the police on how to offer them better protection.
Of course, the advent of new technology and social media has left candidates much more vulnerable to abuse.
A campaign was launched in November with the backing of prominent MPs. The new movement encourages politicians to call out hate simply by using the hashtag #StopTheNastiness.
Someone though who insists nothing much has changed is Brexit Party candidate Ann Widdecombe.
Wera Hobhouse, Bath's Lib Dem candidate, told us she's feared for her own safety.
Bath's Brexit Party candidate says he is used to being criticised for his stance on the EU.
The idea that Brexit is to blame is something the Conservatives reject. The Tory candidate in Bath has faced abuse herself and blames social media.
During the election period we have focused on the West Country's most marginal constituencies that have the tightest battle between parties. To find out where the West Country battlegrounds are and what the story of each constituency is click here.