The Labour Party battle bus visited Whitehaven today to show support for its Copeland candidate, Tony Lywood.

Party chairman Ian Lavery was among the speakers to address supporters at the P&R Club in Greenbank, as part of a tour of the region.

He said: “We are going to win this election and Tony will be the next member of parliament for Copeland. While we’ve been travelling, we’ve met some fantastic people and everybody’s very optimistic and upbeat about winning this election. We are closing the gaps in the polls and what we’re saying is resonating.”

Mr Lavery urged campaigners to continue in their attempts to persuade undecided voters to choose Labour.

He said: “One of the massive challenges we’ve got is to explain to people on the doorstep that still say they are undecided about who they will be supporting. This is a unique election. People in this constituency are desperate for real change, which the Labour Party will bring.”

Speaking exclusively to The Whitehaven News, the party chairman said he was confident that Copeland could be turned red again.

“I’m really confident here in Copeland. The majority is only just under 2,000 and we held the seat for quite some time. This is a red area and I’m convinced that people are listening to what we’ve got to offer. We’re different to everybody else. We’ll transform the lives of people in this constituency.

“We’ve got a great team here and a great parliamentary candidate in Tony Lywood. I love coming here, I’ve been here lots of times. I’ve got a great rapport with many people in this fantastic region.”

Mr Lavery also said the party understood what the nuclear industry meant to people in the constituency.

“The nuclear industry has sustained the area for generations and it’s produced excellent, well-paid unionised jobs. It’s produced top quality jobs and apprenticeships through the years. We are terribly keen to continue in that process.”

Mr Lywood said: “It’s great to see Ian here. Labour’s message of hope needs to be heard. The cuts to the NHS, schools, social care and the police have been deep.

“We need a government that invests in public services and industry in equal measure and an MP who doesn’t just vote for more austerity in Westminster.”