Tory candidate Julian Sturdy hopeful in York Outer
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Tory candidate Julian Sturdy hopeful in York Outer

Even though polls predict a victory for Luke Charters’ Labor party, the Conservative MP for 14 years says that based on what people on his doorstep are telling him, “it’s not as bad” as polls and the media suggest.

The 53-year-old farmer first won the York Outer in 2010 with a majority of 3,688 votes compared to the 9,985 majority he won in 2019.

“It’s not like 2019. It’s going to be close. I feel like I stood up for the first time in 2010,” Press said.


People raise a number of issues such as bus services, green waste charges and potholes, especially potholes. Immigration, the NHS and transport are future national issues.

Although Julian has been criticized by Labor and other groups for not speaking out in the House like many other MPs, he insists Parliament is not just about speaking.

He refers to his membership in selected committees, parliamentary groups and conversations with ministers.

This helped secure funding for the York Outer Ring Road link, Haxby Station, the new York Emergency Center and the Askham Bar Diagnostic Center. The latter resulted from lobbying the Minister after discussions with local GPs who insisted on this.

Similarly, the saving of Strensall Barracks was also the result of direct discussions with the Ministry of Defense and the Minister for Defence. Inphal Barracks in Fulford is scheduled to close in 2030.

Julian also reports that he succeeded in achieving a change in the law through the Private Members Bill regarding tethered horses.

Parliamentary figures also show him to be around 40th most rebellious MP, with Julian recently opposing the government over the tainted blood scandal and, after meeting with affected constituents, supporting Hull Labor MP Diana Johnson in demanding faster compensation payments.

(Photo: photo provided)

During the Covid-19 pandemic, Julian supported the first lockdown “because no one knew what we were dealing with” but opposed the others, saying there was evidence to show they didn’t work and vaccines were starting to offer protection.

The lockdowns, which Labor wanted more, have caused “problems in the NHS, with mental health, a cost of living crisis etc.” – he continued.

Julian will oppose the government “When I think it’s right, I will make decisions based on principles.”

But he warns that governments with large majorities are less accountable because parliamentarians have less say.

Looking back, Julian says he used his farming background to specialize in issues related to agriculture, the environment and animal welfare.

He was chairman of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Antimicrobial Resistance, which deals with ‘superbugs’ and the risks arising from the discontinuation of antibiotics. It was an issue he got involved in because voters raised it.

If voters no longer want him, he will return to the farm between York and Wetherby. But will it happen?

Julian added: “There is frustration and a lack of commitment from all parties. That’s why talking to people is so important. People are frustrated with the government, but at the same time there is no connection with Keir Starmer. Nigel Farage can break through at Clacton, but not at York Outer.

The other York Outer candidates are: Darren Burrows (Ind), Luke Charters (Labour), John Crispin-Baily (Reform UK), David Eadington (Yorkshire Party), Keith Hayden (Independent), Andrew Hollyer (Liberal Democrat), Michael Kearney (green) and Halaenas Mayne (independent).