The general election is exactly a week away and parliamentary candidates are busier than ever campaigning for your votes.

Here, in this article, the four candidates in Hertsmere explain why they should get your vote on December 12.

Stephen Barrett, Liberal Democrat parliamentary candidate

Watford Observer:

"My name is Stephen Barrett and I’m standing to be your Liberal Democrat MP because, despite the current mess, I’m optimistic that with Liberal Democratic policies we can build a brighter future.

"I believe that politics shouldn’t be about offering the moon without knowing where the money is coming from. So, Lib Dems won’t be hiking up borrowing to pay for ideology or Brexit. "Instead, we will Stop Brexit and invest the £50 billion Remain bonus in schools and tackling inequality.

"I work as a school business deader managing the multi-million-pound budget of a large comprehensive secondary school. Every day I deal with the heart-breaking consequences of the continuing financial squeeze on education. Schools desperately need what the Lib Dems promise: 20,000 more teachers as part of an extra £10 billion a year for education.

"I am also a Liberal Democrat district councillor, and I’m heavily focused on our local climate action plan. Nationally Lib Dems will tackle the climate emergency with more renewable energy, by insulating homes and by planting 60 million trees a year.

"As a passionate European, I believe we should stay in the EU avoiding a job destroying Brexit. I also believe that, for very different reasons, both a Boris Johnson or Jeremy Corbyn majority Government would be disastrous for the UK. We need a strong centrist voice in Parliament and I want to be part of that voice.

"You can choose something better this election. Together, we can build a brighter future."

Oliver Dowden, Conservative parliamentary candidate

Watford Observer:

"Hertsmere is my home patch. I grew up around Radlett. Dad worked in a wire factory in Watford, and Mum still works at Boots in London Colney. I went to Parmiter’s School and studied law at Cambridge.

"I live locally with my wife and two children. My experiences have taught me the value of hard work. I believe in providing for your family and serving your community.

"We are fortunate to have the best of both worlds in Hertsmere - beautiful countryside, a strong sense of community, but easy access to London.

"As your MP for the past four years, I sought to preserve and enhance this.

"I’ve helped secure major upgrades to facilities at Elstree & Borehamwood Station, Oyster extended to Radlett, compensation for everyone hit by rail disruption, a new primary school for Borehamwood and £400 million to overhaul Watford General Hospital – where my son was born.

"On Brexit, I voted Remain, but we must respect and deliver on the democratic outcome of the referendum. I’m backing the Prime Minister’s deal so we get Brexit done and move on, so the Government can focus on the things that matter to you and your family.

"Our local NHS needs its fair share from the £33.9 billion we’ve promised, including a modern new health hub for Borehamwood. While we have more good and outstanding schools, they need more funding and we’ve committed an extra £14 billion.

"We’ll also support our local police by recruiting an extra 20,000 officers nationally."

John Humphries, Green parliamentary candidate

Watford Observer:

"I have lived in Shenley for over 25 years.

"I joined the Green Party because of their values. They have the courage to challenge the way things are traditionally done and promote a more positive future for everyone.

"After ten years of austerity and cuts there are so many human issues that need attention: having sufficient money through fairly paid work, or a social safety-net, such as a universal basic income; building much needed homes, the infrastructure to support these new and existing communities; faster access to healthcare; affordable childcare; revitalising our high streets; protecting our environment from over-development and improving our green spaces.

"If elected, I would:

  • work with local authorities and businesses to promote housing developments to increase capacity for both social and affordable homes while preserving the green belt
  • ensure that essential infrastructure and services such as healthcare, schools and transport provision are expanded in line with Hertsmere’s house building plans
  • develop green travel policies for building safe cycle paths, car share schemes, less polluting bus services and electric vehicle charging facilities
  • organise help for those who are vulnerable and struggling to make ends meet
  • engage with communities, especially the elderly, to understand their welfare needs and to help them access services
  • lobby to reverse the cuts in funding for libraries and special needs schools
  • campaign to remove tuition fees for nursing degrees
  • eliminate car parking charges at hospitals for patients, bonefide visitors and staff
  • improve public transport routes to include hospitals."

Holly Kal-Weiss, Labour parliamentary candidate

Watford Observer:

"I began my working life as a social worker, before becoming an early years and primary school teacher in both Shenley and Barnet. Completing my Masters in Dyslexia, I now work with children who struggle with literacy.

"Since 2011, I have been a campaigner for Barnet’s homeless residents, linking over 20 community venues and hundreds of volunteers in order to ensure night shelter provision.

"I have worked with faith communities, building cooperation and understanding, both as a member of Finchley Reform Synagogue and North London Citizens. I am also a governor at a local primary school.

"I have witnessed Hertmere’s committed residents, who care deeply about their wider community, with strong faith groups, schools that promote a sense of neighbourhood and adults who volunteer their time to support the next generation.

"However, voters on the doorstep express concern about lack of infrastructure: difficulty getting GP appointments, costly and reduced public transport, and the lack of affordable housing. There needs to be investment - not just in housing - but in the services that support the needs of the population.

"Hertsmere needs someone who believes passionately that - leave or remain - our community is at its best when we work together. Labour’s Brexit position will give everyone the opportunity to confirm the withdrawal agreement and help us as a country to move on and begin to grow our economy.

"I pledge to develop efficient public transport, protect our NHS, deliver well-resourced schools, a clean environment that protects green belt land, and truly affordable housing."