Liberal Democrats announce candidate for new East Grinstead and Uckfield seat in next general election
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They said they have nominated Benedict Dempsey, 44, who is a former District Councillor (2019 to 2023), to contest the seat at the next general election.
The Lib Dems said Ben grew up in Haywards Heath and went to Oxford University before living in London for ten years and moving back to Sussex 14 years ago to raise his family. They said Ben has a masters degree in sustainable development, as well as a PhD in nature conservation from the University of Sussex.
Ben said: “People in East Grinstead, Uckfield and local villages are desperate for our politics to be better. We are losing the ability to discuss complex issues in a rational and reasonable way. I offer residents the chance to have an MP who listens and is respectful of different shades of opinion, even if we don’t always agree. I believe the values of tolerance, honesty and decency are shared by the vast majority in this country.”
He said: “If I am elected, I will represent the people of East Grinstead and Uckfield with the outward-looking, tolerant, liberal-minded politics that has been so sorely lacking in recent years.”
Ben said the Lib Dems aim to tackle the cost of living crisis, stop sewage getting into rivers, and restore political standards and the rule of law.
He said: “I have lived in Sussex for most of my life, and want to champion the issues that matter to local people. In particular, I will campaign to change the government’s planning system – putting more power in the hands of communities and taking it away from the big developers. That is the only way to tackle our housing crisis, by building the kind of green, affordable homes people actually need, not just the ones that make the most profit for large corporations.”
The Lib Dems said Ben has worked for humanitarian and conservation charities for over 15 years, and has worked in Haiti, Myanmar, Israel and the Palestinian territories. As a District Councillor, he focused on planning and the environment, securing improvements to nature recovery policy in Mid Sussex.