Election of Hope: Part 7 – Pons Carn

Election of Hope is a short story based around a Liberal Democrat candidate in a marginal constituency in the 2019 general election. All of the main protagonists are entirely fictional, although there is some reaction to developments during the real election campaign. Election of Hope is presented for entertainment purposes only and is not written in an attempt to influence anyone’s vote in the general election.

Spanning 250 metres over the River Massen, Pons Carn was a key route for rush-hour and commercial traffic in and out of the town. Constructed in the late 1870s from stone and iron, it had been widened shortly after the Second World War to allow for the construction of a dual carriageway across the water.

Alex raced to the bridge as fast as his SEAT Ibiza would allow him. Weaving perilously in and out of traffic and jumping the occasional red light when he considered it was safe to do so, he was determined to get the Matt before it was too late. As he neared the bridge, traffic had ground to a halt, so he ditched his car and made the rest of the journey on foot, running.

Upon arrival, he reported to the first police officer he found, who led him to PC Marston.

“Thank you for coming so quickly,” PC Marston said. “This bridge is a busy route, and the shortest diversion is almost 20 miles through country lanes. The sooner we can get Mr Tyler to safety and reopen the road, the better.”

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Election of Hope: Part 6 – Fake News

Election of Hope is a short story based around a Liberal Democrat candidate in a marginal constituency in the 2019 general election. All of the main protagonists are entirely fictional, although there is some reaction to developments during the real election campaign. Election of Hope is presented for entertainment purposes only and is not written in an attempt to influence anyone’s vote in the general election. 

“All’s fair in love and politics.” 

Alex stood in Matt’s living room reading the headline from the local newspaper, as Matt listened intently, his head bowed. 

“Could there be a romance brewing between opponents in the race to become the next member of parliament for South West Carn? 

“Liberal Democrat candidate Matthew Tyler was spotted dining with Labour’s Hayley-Ann Reid at the Moonlit Horizon, the most expensive restaurant in Carn.” 

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Election of Hope: Part 5 – The Moonlit Horizon

Election of Hope is a short story based around a Liberal Democrat candidate in a marginal constituency in the 2019 general election. All of the main protagonists are entirely fictional, although there is some reaction to developments during the real election campaign. Election of Hope is presented for entertainment purposes only and is not written in an attempt to influence anyone’s vote in the general election. 

The Moonlit Horizon was an upmarket restaurant overlooking Carn Harbour. Opened in 1956, it was still being run by the same family and had the honour of being the only restaurant in the constituency to be awarded a Michelin Star. It was also the most expensive restaurant in the constituency, and Matt winced when Hayley suggested meeting here.

By the time he arrived, Hayley was already seated at a table away from the window, and the maître d’ led him silently to her. She stood and allowed him to peck her on either cheek before they sat opposite each other. 

“Well, this looks expensive,” he said trying to mask the concern in his voice as he looked around the near-deserted room. Hayley nodded. 

“It’s the most expensive restaurant in Carn,” she replied. “Consequently, it is one of the quietest. I thought this would be the best place to come and talk without being noticed.” 

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Election of Hope: Part 4 – Door to Door

Election of Hope is a short story based around a Liberal Democrat candidate in a marginal constituency in the 2019 general election. All of the main protagonists are entirely fictional, although there is some reaction to developments during the real election campaign. Election of Hope is presented for entertainment purposes only and is not written in an attempt to influence anyone’s vote in the general election.

Some politicians argue that the most difficult part of an election campaign are the hustings. Debating with all of your opponents while questions are fired at you seemingly at random by members of the public interested enough in the political process to bother to turn up is always a nerve-wracking experience.

Other politicians, however, point to canvassing as being the tougher challenge. More intimate than hustings, going door-to-door in the constituency can be an eye-opening experience, for you can never be sure who you are likely to be greeted by. And when you are one-on-one with a constituent who disagrees with your party, or even a single policy, they seem to be more inclined to express their opinion in the relative privacy of their own doorstep than a public debate.

For Matt there was no contest. He would happily take six weeks of non-stop hustings over even five minutes of canvassing. Sure, he was very sociable and he enjoyed meeting new people, but when you turn up at a stranger’s house with a clipboard and a party rosette, it is not your own personality you are being judged on, but the party you are representing. No, he could handle debating other politicians with relative ease. What he could not handle was the unapologetic abuse had had experienced over thirteen years of campaigning. And yet, he kept coming back for more.

So it was on a wet November morning he and Alex paired up to meet the residents of South West Carn, armed with little more than a handful of leaflets, a clipboard and an abundance of baseless self-confidence.

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Election of Hope: Part 3 – The Morning After

Election of Hope is a short story based around a Liberal Democrat candidate in a marginal constituency in the 2019 general election. All of the main protagonists are entirely fictional, although there is some reaction to developments during the real election campaign. Election of Hope is presented for entertainment purposes only and is not written in an attempt to influence anyone’s vote in the general election. 

“Open the fucking door Matt!” 

Alex was hammering so hard against the wood on the door to Matt’s flat that the blue paint had started to flake off, but still there was no answer from within. 

It was 11 o’clock on another cold Sunday morning, and Matt had been due to lead the first day of canvassing. However, when the activists had started to arrive at 10 o’clock he was nowhere to be seen and Anastasia had dispatched Alex to find him while she organised the troops. 

He had been banging on the door for almost five minutes and was growing increasingly concerned for Matt’s welfare. From across the hall, Matt’s neighbour had opened their front door a crack to watch, but did not venture outside to offer assistance. 

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