THE General Election campaign is gathering pace and getting nastier.

The big party leaders’ TVdebate and the Lancashire Telegraph debate with the four Blackburn candidates have taken place – but many voters are still uncertain where to put their cross on the ballot paper.


The nine East Lancashire residents who volunteered to join the Lancashire Telegraph panel of undecided electors seem to be still unsure of what the will do when the get to the polling station.

Operations director Dean Simpson, recruitment consultant Laura Hartley, telecoms worker Paul Rishton, production manager Ian McLean, pop choir organiser Sue Sykora, student Ikram ul-Haq, business woman Melissa MacFarlane, first-time voter Caitlin Jones and lawyer Juber Deriwala have been following every twist and turn of the campaign locally and nationally.

Mr Simpson attended the LT debate at the Thwaites Empire Theatre last week.

He said: “After the evening I felt only two of the candidates, Tory Bob Eastwood and LibDem Gordon Lishman were credible potential MPs. I have decided whoever can do the best for me locally not nationally will get my vote.”

Mr McLean was also there.

He said: “As the father of a 15-year-old boy I was listening for the party that would benefit him more than myself in respect of NHS, Apprenticeships, immigration and our local facilities for the younger generation.”

Ms Hartley said: “There is one party starting to pull away in my mind, but I’d rather not say yet. I’m still in watching and waiting mode.”

Mrs MacFarlane said: “I don’t think much has happened this week to change my view.

“The Conservatives have promised a cut in inheritance tax but I don’t see how that is going to affect people like me and working class families – it will just benefit the upper class.”

Mr Rishton watched the leaders’ debate. He said: “Which party has managed to impress me this week?

“Well we had the multi-party television debate on ITV, all very interesting. Not! Nothing new or impressive from any party leader.”

Miss Jones said: “I have seen that Labour are thinking about building 200,000 new homes, but personally, I think they should be concentrating on young people now.

“For me, it is very hard to find a job.”

Mrs Sykora said: “I have been trying to listen to the political goings on and I am still an undecided voter. I have not made any decisions yet and I am keeping my options open. “ Ikram ul-Haq said: “This week has been kind of a surprise for me.

“I have been reading about the elections, but there is still not one political party that I agree with.”

Juber Deriwala said: “I am looking to vote for a party that will not just look after its voters but will address the needs across the union.”