Election Husting 2015: St Peter's at 7:30 pm on Thursday 23 April
|Alex Wilks||Damian Hinds||Peter Baillie||Peter Bisset||Richard Robinson||Will Hughes|
|Labour||Conservative||UKIP||Green||Liberal Democrat||Vicar of St Peter's|
The audience in a packed St Peter's church was treated to an evening of good natured questions and answers at the husting for the 2015 General Election. All five candidates were present and questions provided by the audience were read either by the questioner or the chairman, Rev'd Will Hughes of St Peter's and current chairman of PACT. There was often agreement between candidates on the answers and there was none of the bickering that occurs in some television election broadcasts.
At one point the chairman commented upon the applause that followed one answer by suggesting that the audience should applaud those answer with which it agreed but that they should reserve expressing their disapproval in the election booth on the 7 May.
In the final summing up all the candidates advised against tactical voting and urged everyone to vote - and to vote for those values and policies which were dear to them.
Candidates for East Hampshire - in alphabetic order of surname:
|Peter Baillie||Peter Bisset||Damian Hinds||Richard Robinson||Alex Wilks|
Green Party Manifesto
Conservative Party Manifesto
|Download the Liberal Democrat Manifesto||Download the
Labour Party Manifesto
Praying in The Square, Wednesday evening 6 May
- See the video: Show Up produced by Christians in Politics
- See the PACT coverage of the 2010 General Election - including a list of the questions posed to the candidates
- When addressing an important issue, which would come first for you if there was a conflict: following your own conscience, listening to the views of constituents, or obeying the will of the party whips?
- Petersfield is seen as a prosperous town, which it is, with many independent shops. However, we still have homeless people here and a well used food bank. How would your parties address this challenge which is replicated across the UK?
- Do you agree that the "first past the post" electoral system is "past its sell-by date" and that the new parliament should urgently consider a system of proportional representation to restore the electors' faith that their vote counts?
- Islamic State - what should be the response of Britain at home and abroad?
- Can we really justify the enormous amount of overseas aid, currently £11.7 billion? Much of which is seemingly wasted?
- Should Housing Associations tenants have the right to buy?
- If elected, what would you do for the young people of this constituency?
- What priority does your party give to reducing carbon emission and what are your policies with regard to onshore wind farms and fracking?
- Please could each candidate say whether they favour the holding of a referendum on Britain in Europe, if not why not and if yes, which side would they campaign for?
- There seems to be a silence from all parties on the subject of defence. Does this indicate a disinterest in the country's security? Are the severe cuts in the defence budget set to continue and what, in your view, should be done?
- Are you concerned that laws to combat extremism could suppress the right to free speech? Could this lead to the marginalisation of Christians from public life?
The Hampshire East constituency includes the medium-sized towns of Petersfield and Alton, and the smaller towns of Bordon, Liss and Liphook. Alton has thriving businesses in the retail and service sector, but the area's financial services industry was hit by the economic downturn. Many residents commute to either London or Portsmouth.
The proportion of households with four or more cars or vans is 4.5%, the ninth-highest, according to ONS 2011 Census figures for England and Wales.
The seat was formed in 1983 out of the old Petersfield constituency and was held by Conservative and former soldier Michael Mates until he retired at the 2010 election. Damian Hinds won it for the Conservatives last time out, with 56.8% of the vote, followed by the Liberal Democrats on 30.5%, Labour 7.9% and UKIP 2.9%.
|What proportion of eligible people voted?||71%||65%|
|What is the average age?||40||39|
|What proportion of the population were born outside the UK?||9%||13%|
|What proportion of those aged over 16 have a degree level qualification?||34%||27%|
|What proportion claim Job Seekers Allowance?||1%||2%|
|What is the average weekly full time wage?||£551||£518|
|What proportion describe their health as 'good' or 'very good'?||85%||81%|
|What proportion of employed people work on the public sector?||11%||19%|
|What is the average property price in this constituency?||£276,000||£210,000|