LibDem's candidate for the Mid Bedfordshire by-election says she will be a hard-working local champion
A Central Bedfordshire LibDem councillor said her focus is on winning the Mid Bedfordshire by-election – and being a councillor.
Emma Holland-Lindsay was one of the group of LibDem candidates that helped to ensure that there were no Conservative representatives in the Leighton Buzzard and Linslade area following last month’s local election.
The Local Democracy Reporting Service asked the councillor for Leighton Linslade West how she feels the people who voted for LibDems in south west Bedfordshire are feeling about the party at the moment.
“My focus is on this by-election,” she replied. “I’m going to be out there campaigning to listen to the views of Mid Bedfordshire.
“I am a councillor, I understand the issues in Central Bedfordshire, I’m chair of the Social Care, Health and Housing Scrutiny Committee on Central Bedfordshire Council.
“That gives me an opportunity to raise the issues that people in this county are mentioning to me.
“Health services is the number one top issue, so I’m going to be focusing on using my role as a councillor to speak up for the people of Bedfordshire,” she said.
Ms Holland-Lindsay said Mid Bedfordshire has been neglected by the Conservatives.
“People don’t know if the NHS will be there for them when they need it,” she said.
“[People are] really concerned about things like policing, Bedfordshire Police has had quite a challenging time and people are telling me that they’re worried that the police won’t be there when they call them.
“Those are the types of issues that people are raising on the doorsteps, but of course, the cost of living crisis is at the front of the mind as well,” she said.
She added: “I want to be a hard-working local champion, who will be there standing up both in the constituency and in parliament and raising the issues that matter to them.
“People have been let down for far too long by the Conservative Party and it’s an opportunity to send a message to Westminster – Liberal Democrat by-election victories in the past have sent shock waves through Westminster.
“So people here have got a chance to send a message to the Conservatives about what needs to change and I think we can be the party to do that,” she said.
"Dave Hodgson [the former Bedford mayor] lost very, very narrowly [in May] and I think it's a message to Labour voters in Mid Bedfordshire to look at what happened in Bedford," he said.
"Labour claimed they were going to win, but they came a poor third. But they did enough to allow the Tories to creep in.
"So when you look at the result in Bedford, which I think it's very sad because Dave was a fantastic mayor, there's a lot of people wishing he was still the mayor.
"And I think there's a lot of buyer's remorse and some people who voted Labour are really regretting it.
"What I'd say to people in Mid Beds is look at Bedford, if you don't get behind the candidate who can really beat the Conservatives, which is clearly the Liberal Democrats - it was in Bedford is in here in Mid Beds Then you'll end up with the Tories just scraping in - don't make that mistake," he said.
Speakign about candidate Emma Holland-Lindsay, he said: "If people put their trust in her, and I really hope they do, they're going to get a fantastic local MP like they've never seen before. She will be the best MP Mid Beds has ever had."