Voters will head to the polls today in what’s billed as the most important general election in a generation.
Boris Johnson (Conservative) and Jeremy Corbyn (Labour) are going head to head in the race for number 10, but in North Wiltshire, there are four candidates vying it out to represent the constituency, where the Conservatives have held the seat since the North Wiltshire constituency was formed by a renaming for the 1983 general election.
The candidates are James Gray (Conservative), Jonathan Fisher (Labour), Brian Mathew (Lib Dems) and Bonnie Jackson (Green Party).
In the last general election back in 2017, Conservative James Gray took the seat with 32,398 votes. Liberal Democrat Brian Mathew was second with 9,521 and Labour’s Peter Baldry third with 9,399.
And the bookies are expecting a similar result with Gray best priced at 1/200, Mathew best priced at 20/1, Fisher best priced at 25/1 and Jackson best priced at 100/1.
Here’s everything you need to know about the candidates.
Conservative: James Gray
James Gray was first elected as MP for North Wiltshire in May 1997.
After becoming an MP in 1997, James served on the Environment and Transport Select Committees until his shadow ministerial career began. He is a member of Mr Speaker’s Panel of Chairmen.
He founded and chairs the All-Party Parliamentary Group for the Armed Forces and the Armed Forces Parliamentary Trust. James is a member of NATO Parliamentary Assembly.
After the 2017 election, he was appointed to the Joint Committee on the National Security Strategy.
He and his wife Philippa live on a North Wiltshire farm.
Green Party: Bonnie Jackson
Having grown up in Chippenham, Bonnie Jackson worked as a corporate chartered legal executive in Bristol.
She moved back to North Wiltshire to become business development manager at a software house.
There, she gained a valuable insight into systems integration between social care and NHS organisations and saw first-hand the impact of NHS underfunding.
She said: “I believe The Green Party has the only vision bold enough to offer a real solution to the climate crisis, to tackle inequality and to fix our economy so that sustainable choices are available to all.”
Labour: Jonathan Fisher
Jonathan lives in Calne with his wife, a place they chose to move to six years ago.
He’s the father of five children. His family is the most important thing in his life, helping to guide and ground him.
He says: “I believe passionately in equality. I think everyone should have equal life chances, regardless of where they are born, who their parents are and whether they are rich or poor.”
He’s a councillor on Calne Town Council and sees this as a really great way to give something back to the town he loves.
Until recently Jonathan chaired a national membership body for social housing organisations called Communities that Work.
Liberal Democrat: Brian Mathew
With a long history of working to alleviate the effects of poverty, Brian has spent much of the last 25 years living and working in some of the most challenging parts of the world.
He previously worked across Africa, from Sudan, to Guinea, Bissau and Angola, and also worked for Water Aid in Tanzania and Zambia. Brian set up the link between the Glastonbury Music Festival and Water Aid, now one of the charity’s most important and nationally inspiring fundraising events.
Brian lives in Yatton Keynell and is very environmentally aware.
You can follow all the developments as they happen on The Standard website wiltsglosstandard.co.uk, where we will be live-blogging the constituency count from Chippenham.