Paul Murphy, managing director of Knight Benton Recruitment, said: “Whilst protecting our local hospitals, the nuclear industry and infrastructure is really important to the area, I cannot help but feel that the candidates, and other politicians before them, forget that Copeland has many other issues and opportunities.
“We are right on the edge of the Lake District National Park, and some of the borough is within it, and we seem to do little to attract the 15 million plus people who visit the Lakes every year. If we could do that, Copeland’s local economy could boom.”
Paul (pictured) believes strongly that towns like Whitehaven, Egremont, Millom and Cleator Moor should be represented by an MP who campaigns to bring serious investment into the area to improve its look and feel.
He cites regeneration and an attractive retail proposition combined with serious online marketing as crucial to developing the local economy and increasing visitor growth.
“Whitehaven, for example, is one of the most beautiful towns I have ever lived in but it is starting to look a little run down and needs a bit of loving,” he added.
“Even a lick of paint in the town centre could make a big difference, it could very easily be transformed into a biscuit tin lid town, like you see in Cornwall and I would want my MP to campaign for the investment and grants that can make that happen.”
The by-election will be held in Copeland on 23 February following the resignation of sitting MP Jamie Reed.
Candidates are Michael Guest – Independent; Rebecca Hanson – Liberal Democrats; Trudy Harrison – Conservatives; Roy Ivinson – Independent; Jack Lenox – Green Party; Fiona Mills – UKIP; Gillian Troughton – Labour.