Got a TV Licence?

You need one to watch live TV on any channel or device, and BBC programmes on iPlayer. It’s the law.

Find out more
I don’t have a TV Licence.


  1. The candidates taking part in the debate are (in alphabetical order of surname)
  2. Suella Fernandes (Conservative)
  3. Simon Letts (Labour)
  4. Martin Lyon (UKIP)
  5. Layla Moran (Liberal Democrat)
  6. Larry Sanders (Green)
  7. Use the hashtag #GE17South to have your say on social media

Live Reporting

By Emily Ford

All times stated are UK

And cut!

That's all for the debate tonight, thank you for watching and getting involved.

Send us your thoughts using the hashtag #GE17South.


Some backstage post-debate reaction with Hannah Bewley

WATCH: Election 2017 South: Brexit

An invited audience quizzed representative of the main political parties during last night's BBC South Election Debate on BBC One.

The subject of Brexit raised passions as the panel discussed its impact and what it means for the economy in the South of England.

The panel discuss the implications of Brexit.

'Bargaining chips'

Conservative Suella Fernandes says Brexit should not be used as a "bargaining chip" ahead of the election.

People are already leaving...

Lib Dem Layla Moran said: "We know people are leaving or they are uncertain, we know that the EU are working to do what it take to make them safe and they are leaving, it's already happening - this is not scaremongering, it's already happening."

'It's like following a sat nav off a cliff'

Larry Sanders gets some laughs for his analogy of Brexit, based on the direction a driver sets off on and not changing it no matter what comes up.

There are 259 treaties in need of renogotiating

An audience member points out that there are 259 treaties will need renegotiating if we leave and there aren't the staff to handle that.

'We thought there would be a recession'

Suella Fernandes begins to say that they thought there would be a recession - but an audience member is quick to point out that we haven't left the EU yet and she fears it will get worse.

Ms Fernandes tells her not to worry - to which she replies: "I am worried, I should be worried, this is my children's future we're talking about."

UKIP think we can 'forge out our own path'

Martin Lyon says the British people have "finally woken up".

Local businessman welcomes leaving the EU

One man in the audience working as a print maker said he welcomes Brexit and believes the economy will be "buoyant" and encourage people to work for themselves.

But Lib Dem Layla Moran says she has met many print makers who are scared, as well as university grants being threatened, the sciences and more.

And now...Brexit

"The reason this election was called" is how host Peter Henley refers to this subject matter.

WATCH: Election 2017 South: Education

An audience of voters had their chance to quiz representatives of the main parties standing in the general election in the BBC South Election Debate on BBC One last night.

Here's what the parties had to say on the subject of education.

The BBC South panel guests discuss education

Are students put off of university because of the debt?

Lib Dem Layla Moran says it's not just the debt of studying at university putting people off anymore - it's the housing costs and she believes they need to bring back education maintenance allowance.

Give the students a fighting chance

In response to the remark of Labour making too many promises on money when it comes to education, Simon Letts said: "The issue really for me with students is if you've been to university you come out with £35,00, £45,000 of debt, you've got to get on the housing ladder but you can't start yourself up on that amount of debt.

"We have got to find a way to support them"

'I'm a member of the Labour party, but I'm not voting for them'

One man in the audience reveals he is a member but won't be voting for Labour.

He said: "How are they going to pay for all these things?"

He added that he is concerned there are too many promises from Labour that they can't guarantee when it comes to funding.

'If you don't invest in our education...'

One audience member takes her chance to speak on education and says: "I think if you don't invest in our education and young people what else do we have in society if we don't get it right when we start then we are doomed for the rest of our lives.

"How can we encourage people to be healthy, social, more active, how do we get that right if we don't invest right at the bottom of our foundations we don't get anything."

Onto education - and that's in crisis too says Labour candidate

Opening the debate on education Simon Letts reveals one school in Southampton is having to cut £1,000 per pupil from its budget, which will begin to put strains on teachers and staffing rates in the city.

'I would vote for someone that actually cares about people'

There's a strong message from the audience that politicians need to show they care about the people they are serving.

WATCH: Election debate panel discuss the NHS

The subject of the NHS and health funding came up during the BBC South Election Debate last night.

Watch as the panel members discuss questions from the audience about the NHS.

The panel discuss health and the NHS

'We can have a society that we want'

Larry Sanders said: "We can have a society that does what we want it to do, we want it to care for people, the economy is the people doing their work. But money has been going to the very richest people, this message that we have to penny pinch and worry is not right."

You guessed it...strong and stable

In reply, Suella Fernandes said: "I don't think the two are mutually exclusive. Our public services, health or schools or other policies from the start all of that can only serve the people and thrive if we have a strong and stable economy"

"I think we've heard that before", retorts Larry Sanders.

People? Or money?

A man in the audience asks: "What's more important to you, the society and the people in it, or is it just about the money?"

How much will it cost to 'save' the NHS?

Peter Henley asks each panellist how much they think needs to be put into the NHS to save it.

Suella Fernandes says £8bn, Simon Letts £22bn, Layla Moran £30bn, Martin Lyon thinks it's even more than £30bn.

Larry Sanders agreed at least £30bn but said £22bn had been cut in recent years and that people were not "stupid" and knew this meant job cuts.

Legalise marijuana - to be or not to be?

One audience member has suggested legalising marijuana to help ease the NHS of costs paying for pharmaceuticals.

'Social care is health care'

Green party candidate Larry Sanders said: "Social care is health care, the solution is to put the two together. Why should people be unlucky enough to have a long term illness have a different out come to life?"

A woman in the audience suffering from multiple sclerosis said she was "absolutely appalled" by the Conservative manifesto and the fact they may have to lose their home to pay for appropriate care.

Social care cap - will people start losing their houses?

One audience member said: "It's how the money is spent, I have seen good, bad and quite frankly ugly use of money, I believe that tax if it's used in the right way can do it."

Suella Fernandes said: "Theresa May has been clear there will be a cap on the funds, no one will have to sell their homes."

The debate is in reference to a cap of £100,000 being put on social care funding, which has gone up from £27,000 but Lib Dem Layla Moran says this is because the money now includes your house.

Are management to blame?

Audience members are asked to consider whether management needs an adjustment within the NHS but many say that's the "easy" way out and the demographics of the nation have changed.

One audience member said: "The model has really got to change" as the service now focuses on conditions which are very different to those it did when it was launched.

Increasing council tax is a popular option

Many audience members have told the panel they would be willing to pay more council tax if it meant improving health and social care.

One man said: "It's an NHS which is pretty damn good, I know it's not great but I don't think it's in a crisis."

'We need a national care service'

Simon Letts for Labour said the NHS "needed to be taken out of the political sector" and voters need a national care service without a private sector.

He told the audience: "We can't go on just arguing about taxes going to raise. We need to get a grip on this before the NHS completely collapses."

The NHS 'is not in a crisis' says Conservative

Suella Fernandes said she disagreed with the views of some that the NHS is in a "crisis" which caused many members of the audience to gasp.

One woman said she "couldn't believe" the candidate didn't appear to understand the situation and a GP in the audience said it was "very difficult" at the moment.

He added: "I'm looking for your thoughts on how you want to make the NHS sustainable, apart from money, it needs more than just that I think to be more substantial, how do we make it more sustainable for the long term?"

'Democratic accountability'

Replying first, Lib Dem Layla Moran said: "Broadly speaking yes, we do need to be listening to people in the profession far more but I do think that there needs to be democratic accountability."

Health and social care is first up for debate

Starting the debate, the panel was asked: "Isn't it time that the fate of health and social care is taken away from politicians and given to an independent panel of experts, patients and professionals?"

The debate begins

Peter Henley welcomes everyone to the debate.

Election 2017: Welcome to the BBC South debate

Behind the scenes ahead of the debate with Hannah Bewley

Good evening!

Hello and welcome to the BBC South Debate.

We will be bringing you all the latest updates from the televised debate this evening which will be broadcast on BBC One at 22:45 BST.

Political correspondent Peter Henley will be leading the way as an audience grills politicians from each party for 45 minutes.

The panel features Conservative candidate Suella Fernandes, Labour candidate Simon Letts, Liberal Democrat Layla Moran, UKIP candidate Martin Lyon and Green party candidate Larry Sanders.