Wakefield by-election: Yorkshire Party names former Tory councillor as its parliamentary candidate

The Yorkshire Party has chosen former councillor David Herdson to stand in the parliamentary by-election in Wakefield.

By Gavin Murray
Tuesday, 24th May 2022, 4:30 pm

Mr Herdson was previously a member of the Conservative Party but resigned in 2019 in protest at Boris Johnson’s policies and attitude.

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He later joined the Yorkshire Party, calling it “a centrist, pragmatic party with a positive and ambitious vision of a stronger Yorkshire in a fairer UK”.

David Herdson was previously a member of the Conservative Party but resigned in 2019.

The by-election was triggered after Imran Ahmad Khan stepped down from his position as Wakefield MP following his conviction for sexually assaulting a boy at a party in 2008.

He had been the first Conservative to take the seat in nearly 90 years when he beat Labour's Mary Creagh during the 2019 election.

Ahmad Khan, who has been jailed for 18 months, previously said he was resigning so that he could focus entirely on clearing his name.

Mr Herdson said: "Both the Tories and Labour are London-based parties with London-based leaders, who have let Wakefield down over the years; the Tories especially so, more recently.

"Yorkshire is ignored by Westminster. We miss out on funding and initiatives in education and transport.

"It would be far better if we got our fair share up front and had the power to decide what to do with it, through a Yorkshire regional parliament, in the same way that Scotland does.

"For example, we could have the same level of investment in education as London, to ensure that younger children get the support they need, while giving all post-GCSE students and adults access to a wide choice of suitable vocational and academic options.

"This would fill skills gaps in health and social care, green technology and transport, hospitality, computing and education itself, creating the economic growth and better-paid jobs we need during the cost-of-living crisis.

"I hope to convince the voters of Wakefield that by backing the Yorkshire Party, they can take a big step towards that fairer future, a future with better education and jobs."

Mr Herdson lives in Crigglestone and works in IT.

The by-election to replace Khan will take place on Thursday June 23.

The Conservative candidate has been named as Wakefield councillor Nadeem Ahmed, while NHS worker Simon Lightwood was chosen as the Labour candidate last week.

His selection came as the entire executive committee of the constituency Labour Party quit in a row over the lack of a local candidate on the shortlist.