The district reacts: Parties and candidates in Ripon respond to snap election announcement

Parties and candidates across the district have responded to Theresa May's announcement today.
Parties and candidates across the district have responded to Theresa May's announcement today.

Parties and candidates from across the district have reacted to Theresa May's decision to call an early General Election on June 8.

For many it has come as a surprise, and for others it has been more expected - but today's announcement has propelled them all into action.

Laura Dinning, Chair of the Skipton and Ripon Labour Party, said: "I was really surprised, but I am feeling really positive about the announcement. It is a welcome opportunity for us as a party to move forwards with our anti-austerity policy and to get out there and talk to people about Brexit and the issues that matter.

"It is an opportunity that we will all really grasp. It has been a surprise for us locally, especially when Theresa May has said repeatedly that she won't call a General Election until 2020.

"But we are in the process locally of sorting out a candidate. Jeremy Corbyn has recently made the position of the party really clear on particular issues, so the timing of this announcement is actually brilliant.

"This has got us all energised and ready to get going."

Pete Flynn, Liberal Democrat candidate for Skipton and Ripon, said: “This election is a huge opportunity for voters in Skipton and Ripon to change the direction of our country and ensure Britain has a decent opposition.

“People in Skipton and Ripon may have voted, just, to leave the EU, but many did not vote for the extreme form of Brexit that Theresa May has imposed on us after being backed by Labour.

“For all those who want to protect our local farming and tourism-based economy by staying in the Single Market and ensure the people have the final say over what comes next, this is your chance.

"This is an opportunity for people to really reflect on the direction they want to take this country in post referendum."

Green Party candidate for Skipton and Ripon, Andrew Brown, said: "We thought this was likely to happen. In local elections we are getting more votes than we were previously, so we hope to continue to make more progress.

"Whoever is elected, there is a major problem with the environment and we must do all we can tackle those issues. I really enjoyed standing in the election last time.

"It was really great to be out speaking to people in the streets of Ripon and having so many different and interesting conversations, bring it on."

This story will be updated as we await further responses from local political parties.