THE Liberal Democrats have selected a candidate for the Hexham consistency in the event of a snap general election.

With an election looking increasingly likely, Hexham Liberal Democrats have chosen Stephen Howse to stand as their prospective parliamentary candidate.

Mr Howse, a 31-year-old from Newcastle, works for an organisation that aims to bring more women into science, technology, and manufacturing careers. He also has a background in campaigns, policy, and the media.

Speaking after his selection Mr Howse took aim at Hexham’s current MP, Guy Opperman over his stance on Brexit.

He said: “I am thrilled to have been chosen to be the Liberal Democrat candidate for Hexham.

“The constituency voted Remain, and I know that businesses and families across the area are very worried about the damage Brexit will wreak.

“Despite having campaigned for Remain himself, the local Tory MP is now squarely behind the government’s plans to crash our country out of Europe without a deal.

“The Tory MP has chosen to put his party before what he knows to be best for the country and the constituency.

“Hexham deserves an MP who will do the right thing on Brexit and who ensure that communities get the investment in healthcare and education that is so sorely needed.”

While Mr Howse is from Newcastle, he said he enjoyed spending time in the Northumberland countryside, and knew the area well. His partner and grandmother also both have connections to the area.

Mr Howse continued: “I have always loved spending my time in the towns, villages and countryside of Northumberland.

“I strongly believe that people across the Hexham constituency deserve better than they’ve been getting from this Tory government. My partner, an EU national, works in the NHS in the constituency.

“I know how hard healthcare professionals are working on behalf of their communities – but years of Tory mismanagement and underfunding have left huge gaps to fill across the service.

“My grandmother was born at the convalescent home in Gilsland. The reason she was born there was because Europe was embroiled in war, and beds in the cities were needed for war wounded. It wasn’t safe for women to give birth when there was a risk of bombing, too. Her story is a stark reminder of what happens when Europe is in conflict.”