The Liberal Democrats have hit the ground running in Chester having already selected their parliamentary candidate in anticipation of a snap general election which was today called by the Prime Minister.
Lizzie Jewkes, 59, was chosen as the Lib Dem candidate last September after Theresa May took over as PM in July.
Mrs Jewkes came third in the wake of triumphant Tory candidate Stephen Mosley and Labour’s losing incumbent Christine Russell when she stood as the Lib Dem parliamentary candidate for Chester in the 2010 general election.
This Thursday (April 20) she is standing for the Lib Dems in the Blacon council by-election.
Staunchly pro-European, Mrs Jewkes says the national poll offers the electorate the chance to rein in the ‘hard Brexit’ being offered by the Tories.
She said: “The Liberal Democrats are standing on a clear platform to prevent a hard Brexit by staying in the single market and to give the British people the final say on the Brexit deal through a referendum.
“This election is a huge opportunity for voters in Chester to change the direction of our country and prevent a disastrous hard Brexit.
“The Liberal Democrats are the real opposition to the Conservative Brexit government and the only party fighting for a Britain that is open, tolerant and united. People in Chester voted decisively to remain in the EU and certainly did not vote for the extreme form of Brexit that Theresa May has imposed on us and being backed by Labour.
“For all those who want to protect our local economy by staying in the single market, and ensure the people have the final say over what comes next, this is your chance.
"The Liberal Democrats are well placed to fight a general election and I am raring to go. Since the referendum thousands of new members have joined us nationally including a large number across Chester constituency.”
A grandmother and mother-of-four, Lizzie lives with husband Kurt in Ellesmere Port. She runs her own management consultancy business.
Mrs Jewkes is an experienced party member who first stood for parliament in 1992 and joined the party at the age of 27, in 1984.
She lays claim to being the person who came up with the idea, adopted by the Con-Lib coalition under David Cameron and Nick Clegg’s leadership, of raising the income tax threshold to £10,000, meaning the low paid wouldn’t pay any income tax.
Mrs Jewkes is national chair of the Liberal Democrat Christian Forum, a member of St Peter’s Church in Chester city centre and a trustee of Night Church.
She recently made the news after spearheading a campaign pushing for the creation of a new town council for Ellesmere Port.
A former magistrate, she takes part in historical reenactments as part of the English Civil War Society.