Election 2015 Northern Ireland

Election 2015: Taking the political temperature in County Tyrone

polling station Image copyright Rui Vieira
Image caption How will the electorate be persuaded to vote at the ballot box?

With two weeks left of campaigning, BBC News NI wanted to find out what the public think about how it's going so far.

How do you decide which party to vote for? Is it just along traditional lines or do you examine each party's policies?

Bardic Players is a thriving drama group in Donaghmore in County Tyrone.

All shades of political opinion, and none, are represented.

Declan McGrath has found the whole thing pretty frustrating.

"Everyone wants to know about cuts and things like that there. But, yet, we seem to be stuck in the same old rhetoric," he said.

Brian Mills agrees: "There's plenty to talk about here, but I'm seeing more about what's happening in England.

"I think there should be more communication here."

Image caption Kieran Devlin believes that politicians "never listen"

The people we spoke to included first time voters and voters under 50.

Kieran Devlin said he believes more should be discussed about issues that really matter.

"To be honest it puts me off. I didn't vote last year - for us it's about health and education and sport," he said.

"The politicians never listen. It's what they can gain for themselves. They gave themselves a pay rise and everybody else gets cuts."

Choosing who to vote for is something Declan believes has almost become predestined.

"It's not so much bred into you - it's nearly expected of you," he said.

"They throw a leaflet in and they presume, because of where you live or who you are, they have your vote and that's it. There's not much discussion about what you would like."

Image caption Joshua Cuddy says certain issues have been "holding people back for years"

Another member of the group, Joshua Cuddy, said: "It's ridiculous that surnames and family ties should tie down exactly who we're voting for, and votes can be counted in people's heads before they've even gone to the polling stations.

"I think we need to move on from those issues that have been holding us back for years and years."

Most of the women in the group found the campaign a particular turn-off.

Emily McKenna said she found the debates "long, boring and pointless".

"You can't waste your vote, especially as a girl - but as a first-time voter nothing appeals to me to want to vote so I don't see the point in voting for someone just for the sake of it."

Only one person in the group had been personally canvassed at their door by a party.

And, for some, the TV debates have been a particular no-no.

Stuart Richardson said: "Politicians are politicians - my TV is for entertainment".

Image caption Emily McKenna said she found the debates long, boring and pointless

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