Candidates gather to do business

Linsey Luke and Louise Bennett, front, fourth and fifth from the left, with candidates from across the region. (Submitted photo)

GENERAL Election candidates from across Coventry and Warwickshire got the chance to tell businesses what they will do for them if they are voted in on 8th June.

The Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber of Commerce and the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) organised the event with 14 candidates.

Conservative, Green, Labour, Liberal Democrat and UKIP candidates attended and talked to around 80 business people about everything from Brexit, digital infrastructure, business rates, and apprenticeships.

One candidate from each party was given the opportunity to speak for five minutes on their party’s manifesto before they spoke to companies individually in a round-table format.

The event was concluded with a question and answer session which allowed firms to raise further issues with prospective parliamentarians.

Louise Bennett, chief executive of the Chamber, said: “The beauty of this format meant that politicians didn’t come and talk at business, it was a two-way dialogue.

“Of course, there was plenty of discussion around Brexit and the need to get the best possible trading arrangements, but one of the big talking points was skills and apprenticeships and how important they are as we look to upskill our workforce to meet the economic needs of the future.

“As a Chamber, we are non-partisan and we look forward to working with those candidates who win seats across our patch to ensure the views of businesses are well represented.”

Linsey Luke, FSB development manager, added: “Businesses do not work to boundaries so it was great that they could discuss wider regional issues with candidates from across the area.”

Environmental issues come under the spotlight at Stratford School tomorrow, Thursday, 1st June, 7.30pm when Nadhim Zahawi (Conservative), Jeff Kenner (Labour), Elizabeth Adams (Liberal Democrat), and Dominic Giles (Green Party) will take part in a special hustings days before the General Election.

To put a question, ring one of the following numbers 01789 730572 or 01926 641560.