We now know the names of all the candidates who will be fighting to become an MP for St Helens in the upcoming general election.
Candidates from Labour, the Conservatives, Liberal Democrats, Green Party and the Brexit Party are all standing in St Helens North and St Helens South and Whiston.
Some of the candidates will likely be familiar to readers, others may not.
All of the candidates are now on the campaign trail and will be looking to convince residents they will be best placed to represent them in Westminster.
There’s going to be a lot to think about before heading to the polls on December 12.
Many of you will already know who they will be voting for, but a significant number of people will be on the fence.
To help with this decision, we’ve put together a few details about each candidate that may help you decide who gets your vote come election day.
St Helens North
Conor McGinn – Labour Party
Conor McGinn is originally from County Armagh in Northern Ireland and was first voted in as the MP for St Helens North in 2015. He was then re-elected in 2017 after Theresa May called a snap election.
The Labour candidate said he will be looking to focus on a number of vital local issues during his election campaign, such as schools funding, NHS pressures and tackling crime and anti-social behaviour.
Mr McGinn will also be keen to discuss his position on Brexit, having advocated for a second referendum since January.
Joel Charles – Conservative Party
Joel Charles is the deputy leader of the Conservative Group on Harlow Council, near Essex, and is a ward councillor for Old Harlow.
He was first elected to Harlow Council in 2008 when the Conservative Group took control of the district for the first time in the town’s history.
Mr Charles said his campaign will set out why “fresh political leadership” is needed in St Helens to address the issues that matter most to residents.
He said the Conservatives must protect the green belt from over-development, tackle knife crime and secure much-needed investment for regeneration projects in the town.
Pat Maloney – Liberal Democrats
Pat Maloney was born and educated in Liverpool, attending Liverpool University before going to work as a software engineer.
He then went on to become a senior representative for his local union.
Mr Maloney was elected onto Liverpool City Council in May 1999, where he represented the Gillmoss ward, serving one full term.
In 2005 Mr Maloney was the Liberal Democrat parliamentary candidate for Liverpool West Derby and ran another campaign in the 2010 general election, this time for Liverpool Walton. He did not get elected on either occasion.
David van der Burg – Green Party
Coun David van der Burg is a sitting councillor on St Helens Council after he obliterated Labour’s Jeanette Banks in May’s local elections.
The Haydock councillor’s successful local election campaign was built on the Green Party’s opposition to green belt development.
His campaign undoubtedly capitalised on the growing frustration with residents in Haydock, largely in response to two massive warehouses built on green belt land at the former Florida Farm site.
Expect Coun van der Burg to focus his campaign on these same issues, feeding into residents’ concerns over the council’s long-delayed Local Plan.
Malcolm Webster – Brexit Party
Malcolm Webster is a retired police officer from St Helens and lives in the borough with his family.
He began his campaign on the streets of Billinge over the weekend and said on Twitter that he received a “really positive response”.
However, St Helens South and Whiston Brexit Party candidate Daniel Oxley reported on Facebook that Mr Webster faced “mixed reactions”.
St Helens South and Whiston
Marie Rimmer – Labour
Before being elected to Parliament , Marie Rimmer spent three decades as a local councillor, including three stints as leader of St Helens Council.
Ms Rimmer was ousted as leader of the council in 2013 after losing a power struggle to her deputy Barrie Grunewald.
She was elected to Parliament in 2015 to represent St Helens South and Whiston and was re-elected in 2017.
Ms Rimmer is now seeking a third term in Parliament and said she will be campaigning for more funding for local services “from a platform of hope”.
Brian Spencer – Liberal Democrats
Brian Spencer is another former leader of St Helens Council, taking the reins under a power sharing agreement with the Tories until Labour wrestled back control in 2010.
Mr Spencer lost his seat on the council in 2012. Since then he has had numerous unsuccessful attempts to get re-elected onto the council for the Lib Dems, including a failed attempt in Bold last May, where he narrowly lost out to the Green Party’s David O’Keefe.
Richard Short – Conservative Party
Richard Short, who lives in Leigh, stood as the Conservative parliamentary candidate for Warrington North in 2015 but was not given a seat to contest in 2017.
Previously he worked as an environmental health officer for Wigan, Bolton, West Lancs and South Ribble councils.
He is the deputy director of Conservative Workers and Trade Unionists and has proudly spoken of his working-class routes, having grew up in council estates in Corby, Wellingborough and Leigh.
Currently he works as a safety and security director for Accor Hotels, which operate three hotels in St Helens, including Chalon Court in town centre.
Daniel Oxley – Daniel Oxley
Former music and religious studies teacher Daniel Oxley has worked in a wide variety of schools in the state and private sector and in the Middle East.
Mr Oxley now works in tourism, specialising in musical tours.
He believes the Brexit Party’s policies would be of “enormous benefit” to the economy of St Helens and other northern towns.
The teacher of 24 years said he will “strongly advocate” implementing the referendum result, which “so many have tried to overturn”.
Kai Taylor – Green Party
Aged just 20 years old, Kai Taylor became the first Green Party candidate to win a seat on Knowsley Metropolitan Borough Council in May 2018.
The 21-year-old is now looking to one-up that achievement by wrestling St Helens South and Whiston away from Labour.
Since launching his campaign, Coun Taylor said he has been “overwhelmed” with the amount of support he’s received across St Helens.
He said it is clear residents are “sick and tired of politicians bickering over Brexit”, and care more about other issues such as rising crime, employment opportunities and the climate crisis.