EVERYONE has known that an election was going to be called sometime this year, so you would have thought that the political parties had plenty of time to think through their stunts and work out the pros and cons of them.

But, no.

No one in Rishi Sunak’s office had thought that it might rain in London in the late spring so they had not thought through how to protect him from a downpour, so the Conservatives’ campaign got off to a wet start.

Then no one seems to have thought of the downside of him campaigning in the Titanic Quarter in Belfast. Presented with an open goal, a reporter asked: “Are you the captain of a sinking ship, Prime Minister?”

And yesterday someone in Liberal Democrat headquarters thought it would be worthwhile putting Ed Davey on a paddleboard on Lake Windermere.

Inevitably, he fell off. Not once, but five times. If you haven’t seen it, search it out – it will make you laugh.

It is impossible to imagine Keir Starmer, with his hair brylcreemed into place, popping up in an overtight wetsuit and floundering around in the water with the elegance of a beached whale. He’ll just keep boring his way to victory…

But Sir Ed’s point is a good one. He was campaigning against the appalling record of our water companies, one of which, United Utilities, has been pumping millions of litres of untreated sewage into Windermere, which is England’s largest natural lake and a world heritage site.

Rather than petty political point scoring, this is exactly the sort of issue the election should be about.

Perhaps we should be commending Sir Ed for doing something so dangerous as failing into one of our polluted waterways with his mouth open. Hopefully, the daftness of the pictures will not drown out his important message.

The Northern Echo: Ed Davey, Lake Windermere