Lancashire’s three marginal seats, Blackpool North, Pendle and Morecambe and Lunesdale are all Tory seats at risk of flipping to Labour, if the Brexit party splits the Leave vote.
If the Brexit Party campaigns in these seats, splitting the pro-Brexit voter base, it could dilute any Conservative majority in those seats. Nigel Farage has committed to contesting every seat, but it is not clear how actively the party will campaign.
Blackpool North already has a Brexit Party candidate listed to run, Jon Conway, 60. He is a theatre producer who brought the Illuminasia light show to Blackpool. He is standing against MP Paul Maynard, who has a 2,023 majority.
There are currently eight Conservative seats in Lancashire, and eight Labour seats. The other two most marginal seats are also Conservative held.
- Pendle: 1,279 Majority
- Morecambe and Lunesdale: 1,399 Majority
A Brexit Party spokesperson has said that currently they still plan on campaigning in every seat.
However, Nigel Farage has urged for ‘some kind of alliance’ between his Brexit Party and the Conservatives, which might include stepping down marginal seat candidates.
Donald Trump also commented that if the parties worked together they would be ‘an unstoppable force’, however the Conservatives said they are not interested in any pact with the Brexit Party.
The Brexit Party has until November 14 to confirm the candidates that will run, whether they will challenge the Conservative MP’s, or focus on taking Labour seats they think they can win.
Lancashire is unusual in that it is one of the only counties where every district voted a majority for leave, indicating that Brexit Party candidates could highly disrupt both Labour and Conservative campaigns in the county.
In Lancashire, the last time a seat was held by any party other than Labour and Conservative was in Burnley in 2010 by Liberal Democrat MP Gordon Birtwistle, but is now held by Labour.