THE Conservative candidate for the Hartlepool by-election has been announced.

An election is due to be held on May 6 following the resignation of former Labour MP Mike Hill. 

The Conservative candidate is farmer and North Yorkshire councillor Jill Mortimer. 

She will be campaigning to become the first Conservative MP for Hartlepool since the seat was created in 1974. 

She said: “I am thrilled to be selected as the Conservative candidate for Hartlepool.

“I know it will be a very tough fight, but I cannot wait to get out campaigning to get my message across to everyone living and working in the town.

“Helping Hartlepool to bounce back and thrive after this terrible pandemic will be at the heart of my campaign.

“The Government is committed to levelling up across the country and if elected as Hartlepool’s MP I want to make sure this town is at the centre of the post-pandemic recovery by creating more jobs and apprenticeships and attracting extra investment to the town.

“I want to show I am the best candidate to represent Hartlepool and how my plan will improve lives for families here. 

Conservative Party co-chair Amanda Milling said: “I am delighted Jill has been selected as our candidate.

“Jill’s vision for Hartlepool will deliver on the people’s priorities and she will fight to ensure the Government builds on the recent positive announcements for the area, not least the new Tees freeport, which includes the Port of Hartlepool and means we can cut red tape to attract new investment.

“However, we are also under no illusions it will be a tough fight to win the seat as a Conservative.

“But Jill’s campaign will show how Hartlepool has been let down by the Labour Party for decades and only a Conservative MP can serve the best interests of the town as it builds back better from the pandemic.”

The Labour candidate is Dr Paul Williams.

Hilton Dawson has been confirmed as the candidate for the North East Party.