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  1. Coverage of the BBC Radio Lancashire debate about the 2017 general election
  2. Neil Darby (Lib Dems), Mark Hendrick (Lab), Paul White (Con), Simon Platt (Ukip) and Tina Rothery (Green) taking part
  3. Debate held at Preston's Avenham Pavilion
  4. Updates from Thursday 1 June

Live Reporting

All times stated are UK

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Our live coverage of the debate

Thanks for joining us for what has been an interesting and far-reaching debate.

'Linking east to west is key to prosperity'

Paul White of the Conservatives says:

Conservatives are in favour of fracking where there is a benefit and revenue for the local community.

I'm glad to see transport in northern England improving as linking east to west is key to the prosperity of the area.

'HS2 is a vanity project'

Ukip's Simon Platt says:

In terms of transport - HS2 is a vanity project that won't do us any favours in Northern England.

We are in favour of localism and local links.

Railways 'we can all benefit from'

Labour's Mark Hendrick says:

We want to bring back public ownership of the railways.

We want HS2 to link the North and South and have a crossrail of the North from Manchester to Leeds, so we can all benefit from it.

Climate change is also a key issue.

'We oppose fracking'

Liberal Democrats Neil Darby says:

It was a massive insult to people of Lancashire that the government overturned the council's decision not to frack.

We oppose fracking.

'We want to make local transport free'

The Green Party's Tina Rothery says:

There's such indignity in the way we make rural communities live with no buses or post offices.

We want to make local transport free for the elderly, disabled and young.

Fracking is a key issue in Fylde - there will be 500 vehicle movements per frack and the infrastructure will not deal with that. By the time they abandon the wells and realise, we'll be left to pick up the bill.

What can be done about transport and the environment?

The final subject of the evening for the panel is transport and the environment.

BBC Radio Lancashire listeners had this to say on the topic:

'Combine the NHS and care services'

Ukip's Simon Platt says:

The biggest item in our budget is for the NHS. We have a proposal to fund additional nursing and medical training services.

Part of our plan is also to combine the NHS and care services, so we have joined-up thinking.

NHS staff 'are working hard but are demoralised'

Labour's Mark Hendrick says:

Staff are working hard but are demoralised - but they have had an effective 14% pay cut. NHS workers' rights need to stay the same and be protected.

We will invest £8bn with £1bn for elderly care.

The NHS 'is important and needs to be funded properly'

The Liberal Democrats' Neil Darby says:

We will put an extra £6bn funding into the NHS with £1bn going to mental health services - it'll mean that you have to pay 1p in £1 extra on income tax.

It is important and needs to be funded properly.

'Patients are paying the price'

Tina Rothery of the Green Party says:

The people own the NHS. The Conservatives have been in power for seven years and have got it terribly wrong.

There's begging for beds [and] no care in the community, so people are stuck in hospital.

The previous government got it wrong and patients are paying the price.

'The NHS needs more support'

Conservative Paul White says:

There is an aging population and the NHS needs more support - it's how we deal with that. Hospitals are under increasing strain - there are issues with seeing a GP.

The places that will be least affected (by the demantia cap) are places in Lancashire, because of the income and life savings being low - it's people from areas like that, they will do well.

What can be done about health and social care?

The panel is asked about the issues around health and social care.

BBC Radio Lancashire's listeners had this to say:

'No deal is a bad deal'

Labour's Mark Hendrick says:

We accept the outcome of the referendum. If the British people said leave, we leave.

We need to get the best possible deal. No deal is a bad deal. Without one, if we want to export or import, severe tariffs will cost us up and down this country.

We want to keep good environment and food standards - and we need our neighbours.

'It's right for the people to have the final say'

Liberal Democrat Neil Darby says:

Twelve months ago, no-one knew what leave meant and we still don't know what leave means. We're being asked to blindly trust the government to get the best deal.

What should happen is the government goes and negotiate and then come back with the best deal [and] we want to then go back to the people and ask them if they agree with the deal.

It's right for the people to have the final say.

'Bemused because of the mixed messages'

The Green Party's Tina Rothery says:

I went through the Brexit vote dazed and confused.

The side of the buses were so clearly a lie. I felt bemused by the end of it because of the mixed messages.

For me, it is as if I've agreed to go out for dinner but you haven't told me if I'm having fast food or luxury cuisine.

'We have got to fight for the the best deal'

Paul White of the Conservatives says:

Theresa May has set out a clear plan on how she would like to conduct negotiations.

She's saying anything is on the table here and we have got to fight for the the best deal.

'We have a bright future outside the EU'

Ukip's Simon Platt says:

We have a bright future outside the EU.

We can be a self-governing nation again, trading with the world on friendly terms... and we'll have a Brexit bonus at just under £10bn.

What are the issues around Brexit?

The panel is asked to discuss the issues around Brexit.

BBC Radio Lancashire's listeners had this to say:

'We want to triple the early years premium'

Neil Darby of the Liberal Democrats says:

As young as aged six, you can tell what a child's future is likely to hold based on whether they are from a wealthy or less well off background.

We want to triple the early years premium.

At the moment, too many people are not paying what they're due in tax and we need to try and make sure those who have more money contribute more to the system.

'Teachers are undervalued and underpaid'

The Green Party's Tina Rothery says:

One of the greatest investments is in our children.

Schools are overcrowded and teachers are undervalued and underpaid.

We want formal education to start at aged seven, get rid of SATs and provide universal childcare.

'There needs to be fairer school funding'

Conservative Paul White says:

I'm a supporter of grammar schools, I think they can be really good for communities.

If there is demand for a grammar school, I don't see why we shouldn't fund them.

There needs to be fairer school funding - by 2022, there will be £4bn extra for education.

'We favour strong primary education'

Ukip's Simon Platt says:

We favour strong primary education, focused on the three 'R's but also an emphasis on science and foreign languages.

In secondary schools, we have a policy in favour of academic schools and vocational training - we would fund selected university courses at selected universities focusing on STEM subjects - we have a shortage of graduates there and we need them for the economy.

'Student maintenance allowances and free school meals'

Labour's Mark Hendrick says:

We want to abolish tuition fees, reintroduce maintenance allowances for younger students and give free school meals to primary school kids.

We also want 30 hours of free childcare for young children [and] all of this has been costed.

What needs to be done about education and family?

The panel is asked to consider the issues of education and family.

BBC Radio Lancashire asked listeners what they thought and they had this to say:

Police cuts 'demoralising and dangerous for the public'

Tina Rothery for the Green Party says:

It's never been more urgent to defend ourselves more appropriately [and] cuts to the police forces have been demoralising and dangerous for the public.

Knee jerk reactions and shoot to kill policies - the fact we are discussing this means something is very wrong at the heart of what we are doing. We need to look at why we have this threat and what is causing it.

Extra armed police will help 'tackle the problem'

Paul White for the Conservatives says:

To think that just recruiting extra police will tackle this problem - it will not.

The 1,500 extra armed police [already announced], they're the kind of things that will.

'One thousand more police officers on the streets'

Labour's Mark Hendrick says:

There's been 20,000 police officers cut in last seven years by this government and the coalition government.

We are pledging 1,000 more police officers on the streets.

We will pay for that by increased taxation for 5% of people earning £80,000 and above per year - this money will go towards the health service, care and extra security.

'Twenty thousand police in the next 5 years'

Ukip's Simon Platt says:

We will recruit 20,000 police in the next 5 years.

We can afford that through the Brexit bonus - the money that we will save on our net contributions to the EU.

'Enough is enough is fair comment'

Liberal Democrat Neil Darby says:

We've had three major incidents in the last three months, enough is enough is fair comment.

We'd put £300m into extra community policing - this is the key.

We'd also like to see cross border co-operation with international partners [as] terrorism doesnt know boundaries.

What needs to be done about defence and security?

After the terrible events of this weekend - and a couple of weeks ago in Manchester, the panel is asked to talk about defence and security.

Here's what BBC Radio Lancashire's voters had to say on the topic:

Who will be debating?

Debating tonight in Preston's Avenham Pavilion will be representatives from all five major parties, refereed by BBC Radio Lancashire's Graham Liver.

BBC Radio Lancashire panel

They are:

  • Neil Darby - Liberal Democrat
  • Mark Hendrick - Labour
  • Paul White - Conservative
  • Simon Platt - Ukip
  • Tina Rothery - Green Party

You can listen to the debate on BBC Radio Lancashire or follow it here.

The seats that could decide the election

There are 650 constituencies in the United Kingdom, but the election campaign over the coming weeks will be concentrated in the marginal battleground seats - the ones with small majorities that are most likely to change hands.

There's no official definition of a marginal seat but people often look at constituencies where the majority - the gap between the first and second placed parties - is under 10%, such as in Lancaster and Fleetwood, Chorley, Burnley and Blackpool South

General election battlegrounds

BBC Politics' Peter Barnes has taken a look at the seats being targeted by the parties.

Why education could determine how you vote

Class used to be an accurate indicator of voting habits - but that's no longer the case.

BBC Newsnight's Katie Razzall has investigated the new political divisions in Britain and reports on the education divide.


What do we know about those jockeying for position?

There are more than 3,300 candidates hoping to win one of the 650 seats in the UK's House of Commons on 8 June.

BBC News' Ed Lowther has taken a look at those jockeying for position in the race for election and found there are more women running for office than ever before and very few MPs are quitting.

Pie charts

Which party is ahead in the polls?

Who will win the general election and by how much? The BBC's poll tracker aims to keep track of public opinion and answer those questions.

Check what the latest opinion polls say and follow updates from the BBC's senior elections and political analyst Peter Barnes.

BBC poll tracker

The poll tracker is updated as the campaign continues to unfold.

What you need to know about the general election

BBC Politics have put together a handy guide to all the things you need to know about the election, answering questions like "Why is this a 'snap' election?", "How do I register to vote?" and "What are the key dates?".

Ballot box

Welcome to the debate

Hello and welcome to the live page for the BBC Radio Lancashire debate in Preston about the upcoming general election.

We will be bringing you updates about what the candidates from each party have to say as the debate goes out from 19:00.

Before it begins, we'll take a look at some of the BBC's other online content around the election and find out a bit more about the people who will be speaking.