Election 2015 England

The Northern Party: New party targets Lancashire seats

The Northern Party Image copyright The Northern Party
Image caption The new party claims former Tories and Labour Party members among its recruits

A former Tory MP and the nephew of an ex-Labour MP have launched a new party targeting five seats, mostly marginals, in Lancashire.

The Northern Party, which was launched on Wednesday, says it is campaigning in Lancashire and the North

Its leader is Michael Dawson, a former Executive Committee member of the Labour Campaign for Human Rights

The candidates include Harold Elletson, former Conservative MP for Blackpool North from 1992 to 1997.

Mr Dawson said the party planned to contest Morecambe and Lunesdale, Lancaster and Fleetwood, Blackpool North and Cleveleys, Fylde and Rossendale and Darwen.

Claiming support from former Tories, Labour and Greens Mr Dawson added: "We've been planning this for months. This is a Northern Rebellion against a system that has failed the North."

He also said: "We'll cost the Tories seats and then we'll go after Labour."


Analysis: Chris Rider, BBC Radio Lancashire Political Reporter

The group behind the Northern Party have clearly worked out their strategy in delaying this announcement so close to the election. The former Blackpool North Conservative MP Harold Elletson and Michael Dawson, the nephew of Hilton Dawson - the former Lancaster Labour MP - have led the way on this.

The two have for a while being involved in their campaign for the north, to bring back more power and wealth to the region.

The clear tactic is to focus on the Conservative marginals.

So, the question is whether the Northern Party is here to stay. Its manifesto sets out various plans to deal with the problems facing the region - health, schools, the economy, housing.

The party says it has been working with various organisations to enable it to make real progress.