This week saw the hustings for the new Conservative Party leader at the Hippodrome in Darlington. Candidates and attendees at the event were greeted by protestors who stood with placards outside the venue.
As Conservative Party members went inside to listen and think about who they wanted to replace Boris Johnson as their leader, the protestors had a different take on the matter, not really wanting either candidate.
Campaigner, James Sheerin described the scene:
“It was excruciatingly hot in Darlington and the queues of the Conservative party faithful were sweltering in their best Sunday suits and finery. We gave Truss and Sunak a roasting as they arrived at the back door of the Hippodrome. “Welcome to Scotland Mr Sunak” we shouted, “Tories Fail the North”.
“We told Ms Truss what we thought of her illegal plans for abandoning the Northern Ireland Protocol. The strong message that we and other protesters delivered was the Tories had won the allegiance of the so-called “red wall” by making promises they had no intention of keeping. One lady had a placard highlighting the scandalous and increasing levels of child poverty in the North East since the Conservatives had come into power.
“We asked the North East Tories waiting to get in whether they were proud of Sunak boasting that he had taken money from poorer regions like the North East and given funds to affluent areas like Tonbridge Wells instead. They went very quiet!”
Louise Brown said:
“I went to ask the Tories where all the levelling up for the North had gone….especially in this Red Wall area . Instead all we hear is they want to siphon off money from the North to the South.”
Placards included messages such as:
“Darlington’s child poverty is 37.5% rising.”
“Tories fail the north.”
“Brexit has failed.”
There were also climate change protestors and a group protesting about the Consett incinerator.