Lib-Dems finally choose Gainsborough candidate

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West Lindsey district councillor Lesley Rollings has been chosen to fight the Gainsborough constituency for the Liberal Democrats.

The long-awaited move sees the Thonock councillor challenge sitting Conservative member Sir Edward Leigh, who holds a 10,000 vote majority.

Her other rivals for the seat include John Saxon of UKIP, David Prescott for Labour, and the Green Party’s Geoff Barnes.

“We have chosen one of our most active councillors to stand for Parliament in her home constituency,” said Gainsborough Lib-Dem constituency chairman Angela White.

“Lesley has a close understanding of rural and urban issues that concern people of all ages, but especially young people who are starting out on their working life. We feel that it is vitally important to have a candidate that has lived in the constituency for many years,” she said.

Accepting her nomination, Coun Rollings said she was determined to try and bring much needed inward investment to the large rural constituency.

“Traditionally Governments have apportioned grants in a way that benefits cities at the expense of rural areas. We need to redress this imbalance,” she continued.

The married mum-of-three, who works as a teacher and Community Manager at Gainsborough Academy, said she is also concerned that the NHS locally is ‘cracking at the seams’ and pledges to fight for a better deal for them.

She also has organised a major conference to be held in Gainsborough in September which aims to draw in town and parish councils across Lincolnshire to consider better methods of safeguarding children and vulnerable adults.

Coun Rollings is also a former Mayor of Gainsborough, whom Lib-Dems credit with leading a turnaround of Gainsborough Town Council, which was on the brink of bankruptcy. She remains on the town council as chair of its community services committee.

The Pilham resident and councillor also won a County Council by-election in Scotter last year.

Market Rasen-based Lib-Dem party activist Guy Grainger described his PPC as “a local candidate who knows what’s going on.”

The Lib-Dems were runner up in the seat at the last general election in 2010 and they last won the seat in 1923.

But academic polling and analysis suggests they will struggle to do anywhere near as well on May 7, with the party expected to trail Labour, UKIP, as well as Sir Edward.