IN the middle of their election campaigns, candidates for Harwich and North Essex have highlighted their top priorities if elected.

The constituency’s six candidates have each stressed what they are most passionate about changing, improving or tackling in the run up to the General Election.

Peter Banks (Green) said: “I am saddened to see so much litter in many areas of our constituency, particularly by the sides of our roads, including plastic bags, bottles, cans, etc.”

He said there are excellent voluntary campaigns running locally, but they need better support from local authorities and businesses.

“Cultivating a respectful society that cares for our area and wildlife is integral to creating a cleaner, better future for everyone to enjoy and benefit from.”

Sir Bernard Jenkin (Con) said: “Apart from getting Brexit done, I’m passionate about securing jobs and investment in infrastructure.

“We got the wind energy skills centre into Harwich, and the Innogy offshore-wind support operation. Harwich must have the A120 upgrade by 2025, and there is now a big team working on a long-term solution to the Manningtree road and rail crossing.

“I’m also passionate about improving patient safety in the NHS, locally and nationally. I led the campaign for the new Healthcare Safety Investigation body which is now set up.”

Tony Francis (Ind) said: “I am most passionate and focused on creating micro community blue prints for the eradication of poverty and disaffection.

“Give a street homeless man a tent and you eradicate his immediate poverty. Give him a homeless pod and you raise his living standard again.

“Once he has a prefabricate house to build, with assistance, you give him a purpose, a reason for the day and a home which he has full ownership of.”

“I am personally passionate about this and am practically engaged in projects to eradicate poverty using this simple methodology. “ Mike Beckett (Lib Dem) said: “It is so difficult to choose one thing, but if I must it would be returning a greater measure of choice and control to local areas from Westminster. Local experts are best placed to know and to help their community.

“Empowering parish and town councils with more autonomy to act in the local area will mean that the issues that matter to us, such as project funding, public services, homelessness, poverty and youth services.”

Stephen Rice (Lab) said: “Division and waste. That is what I am passionate about changing locally, and further afield.”

He said he is passionate about division and waste in education, health, commerce, industry, the arts, the church and the military. He added: “Waste goes hand in hand with this conflict - waste of money, resources, potential and worst of all, time.

“I look for a kinder, more co-operative, outward-looking society and this is what I have set about changing.”

Richard Browning-Smith (Ind) said he’s concerned about infrastructure being “stolen by new built houses” from residents.

He said: “Infrastructure of Harwich and North Essex has been hit so hard last year when Tendring Council had no forward plan in operation.”