Former High Peak parliamentary hopeful switches party allegiance

Charles Lawley
Charles Lawley

A former Liberal Democrat parliamentary candidate for the High Peak has announced his defection to the Conservatives.

Charles Lawley, who contested the 2017 general election and also stood for the Chapel & Hope Valley seat on Derbyshire County Council, cited the Conservative Party’s performance both nationally and locally when making his decision.

Mr Lawley, 30, from Chapel-en-le-Frith, said: “I decided to leave the Liberal Democrats shortly after the general election over differences on national policy. The three biggest policy concerns for me have always been the power of the free market economy to lift people out of poverty, protecting the environment and Britain’s role in the world.

“Since leaving the Lib Dems I have seen that the Conservatives are doing wonderful things in these three areas in particular, so I am delighted to join the party and optimistic about the country’s future while they are in government.

“Locally, I know from working with them personally that the local Conservative councillors are all excellent at their job, put their communities and the High Peak first and have done a marvellous job running High Peak Borough Council, ensuring we receive high quality services, and they are making huge progress in turning around Derbyshire County Council after inheriting it from Labour last year, so I am excited to work with them and endorse the Conservatives locally too.”

Mr Lawley said he also wanted to prevent a Corbyn-led Labour government from “wreaking havoc on this country and the globe”.

“I work in humanitarian aid and international development, helping the most vulnerable people here in the UK and around the world, and the policy platform that the current Labour Party has cobbled together has been tried many times before and every time it has been enforced it has increased poverty and severely reduced liberty and living standards,” he said.

“My view is that a more just and prosperous world can only be achieved for Britain through free markets and liberal interventionism and, as thus, I feel it’s my duty to join and campaign for the Conservative Party to support their ideas that has made the UK so prosperous.”