Nation at the polls: how are the candidates feeling?

THE last days of the campaign trail have seen a flurry of activity for the candidates in Hampstead and Kilburn as they try to pick up a few more votes before the electorate heads to the ballot box today. The candidates displayed a mixture o

Susanna Wilkey

THE last days of the campaign trail have seen a flurry of activity for the candidates in Hampstead and Kilburn as they try to pick up a few more votes before the electorate heads to the ballot box today.

The candidates displayed a mixture of nerves and excitement with some feeling confident and others less so in the run up. Acknowledged as the most important election for a decade, campaigning has been fierce from all three parties with the outcome still unclear nationally and in the three-way marginal of Hampstead and Kilburn.

The Ham&High caught up with the candidates to find out how they are feeling.


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Bookies favourite Liberal Democrat Ed Fordham said: "I have always taken the view you should enjoy elections.

"I am just going to keep knocking on doors - I passed the 15,000 mark last night. People are making their minds up right now and it is exactly the right moment to have a conversation. It feels good at the moment. People like what they saw and heard of Nick Clegg.

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"I am a Liberal Democrat and we are used to being deprived at the last moment of victories but I am going to keep going because it is the people who decide not the polls or the bookies."

Conservative candidate Chris Philp is feeling very confident. He said: "All the recent evidence says it will be close between the Conservatives and Labour and on the doorsteps it looks very good for us. If I think back to how Gospel Oak was in 2006 just before we won the three council seats there the general feeling across the constituency is better now than before that election. We are going to be meeting as many people as possible door knocking and doing street stalls. We have got literally about 100 volunteers around the constituency delivering leaflets."

Glenda Jackson is feeling confident she can hold on to the seat she has represented for the last 18 years. She said: "This has been one of the most fascinating and exciting campaigns I have ever fought. The feeling out in the street and the reception we have been getting is great. It is going very well and I am feeling confident that I can win. The people of this country always take General Elections seriously and they are taking this one particularly seriously. We have to keep this delicate recovery going and we are best placed to do that."

In Holborn and St Pancras the battle is equally as hard fought with all the candidates doing everything they can to secure votes in the run up to today.

Labour MP Frank Dobson said things on the doorstep are going well and he is feeling sunny. "People have been very welcoming," he said. "I have yet to be abused by anyone apart from the other candidates and they don't really count.

"I am never confident in the run-up to elections but things do seem to be pretty good. I have been meeting parents at our schools and I will be roaming around convincing people to vote."

Lib Dem candidate Jo Shaw is excited and believes her party can really win this time around. "It is going very well and it will be extremely close between us and Labour," she said. "We have really got an opportunity to do it this time and it feels very positive. I have no idea what is going to happen but I know it feels very close. By no means am I confident because that would mean being complacent. I plan to speak to as many people as possible and let them know the fresh start we are offering."

Conservative candidate George Lee said: "We have been going out every day from seven in the morning until late at night and we have got teams all over the constituency. There will be a high Conservative turnout on the day and we will be concentrating on our pledges and getting them out.

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