Election chance to level up North East - Labour

Richard Moss spoke with Labour's Ian Lavery, Liberal Democrat Natalie Younes and Sir Robert Goodwill of the Conservatives in the Politics North studio
The BBC's Richard Moss spoke with Labour's Ian Lavery, Liberal Democrat Natalie Younes and Sir Robert Goodwill of the Conservatives [BBC]

A Labour candidate has said the general election will be a chance to level up poorer parts of the region.

Blyth and Ashington candidate Ian Lavery told BBC's Politics North a cost of living crisis had been going on "for many years, not just since Covid and the Ukraine war".

The Conservatives said economic recovery was already benefiting people.

Ex-Scarborough and Whitby MP Sir Robert Goodwill said his party had "a very good case to make".

Ian Lavery
Ian Lavery said the people in the North East needed a better standard of living... [BBC]
Sir Robert Goodwill
...while Sir Robert Goodwill said people were already feeling the benefits of an improving economy [BBC]

Former Labour Party chairman Mr Lavery said people in the region were being "left behind".

"It's now time to ensure that levelling up means what it says," he said.

He said that meant making sure "people have got a much better standard of living in the North East - the same as others across the country".

Sir Robert Goodwill agreed the economy was "central", but said: "We've seen inflation now coming down to normal levels."

People were "getting a bit of money in their pockets with the £900 pension increase and National Insurance cut, and employment is still at good levels," he said.

Natalie Younes
Natalie Younes said everybody had "had enough" [BBC]

Meanwhile, the Liberal Democrat candidate for the new North Northumberland seat, Natalie Younes, said the time was right for an election.

"The noise I'm getting on the doorstep is that everybody's had enough," she said.

She added the election gave frustrated voters a chance to have their say.

"Now people have got hope and can place their vote and make a choice."

Follow BBC North East on X (formerly Twitter), Facebook and Instagram. Send your story ideas to northeastandcumbria@bbc.co.uk.

More stories from BBC