LETTER: Norman – the best we’ve had

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I felt compelled to write to you after reading the article by MP Maria Caulfield of January 20.

For balance, I would argue that Norman Baker was the best MP Lewes has had.

Unlike Maria, he stuck up for local people and dealt with local and national issues. Sometimes that meant he went against the grain – he didn’t just say what people wanted to hear – he went out and did things and got them done. He was was prepared to put his head above the parapet when he needed to.

More locally, Lib Dems have been campaigning for free parking in Newhaven yet this has been repeatedly blocked by the Conservatives at Lewes District Council – it would seem they would much sooner sign secret contracts to sell off our much-loved open spaces. We have also demanded action on the woeful traffic and pollution issues in the town yet the Conservatives at East Sussex County Council refuse to listen.

These are but a few examples of the failings of the Conservatives locally. I need not mention the train service – which seemed to work just fine for the 18 years Norman was our MP – but within weeks of the election, the service crumbled.

Where Norman fought hard to protect local services, such as the trains, our healthcare and our social care for the elderly, Maria has been invisible.

Norman knew the importance of working with local councils to get things done – before becoming our MP he was a parish, district and county councillor so he had the knowledge, understanding and most importantly the dogged determination to do everything he could to support local councils to achieve positive outcomes for local people and overcome issues.

Maria was parachuted in by the Conservatives from Wales, doesn’t even live here and has no local links.

We no longer have an MP who can or will support local communities. Instead, Maria seemingly occupies her time point scoring, trying to re-write history and taking credit for things that she has had little or no involvement in. People are now starting to see through the cracks in the veneer of her lies and spin – I often meet members of the public, on all sides of the political spectrum, who tell me what an amazing MP Norman really was and how much they regret that he is no longer our MP. Just this weekend I spoke with a lifelong Conservative voter who told me he regrets having voted for Maria, because he thought she had been not only ineffective and a disaster for local people.

Charlie Carr

Iveagh Crescent, South Heighton