UKIP candidate Jonathan Noble has denied he faces a ‘mission impossible’ winning the Louth & Horncastle seat in next month’s General Election.
Mr Noble must overturn a near 15,000 majority secured by Victoria Atkins for the Conservatives in the 2015 election.
It is regarded as one of the safest Tory seats in the country with Ms Atkins an odds-on favourite. Challenges will also come from Labour, the Liberal Democrats, and the Official Monster Raving Loony Party.
In addition, he must also overcome UKIP’s wipe-out in last week’s county county elections. Mr Noble was one of the UKIP candidates who failed to secure a seat, losing out in the Tattershall Castle ward.
However, Mr Noble – a serving Boston Borough councillor – says he is determined to stage a strong challenge.
He said: “It’s not a mission impossible. I’d describe it as a ‘mission difficult’. However, we’re not aiming to finish second. We’re aiming to win .”
Mr Noble said Brexit could be one of the keys to the entire election, and denied the fact that the UK had already voted to come out of Europe would lead to a collapse of the UKIP vote.
Mr Noble said: “This constituency had one of the biggest out votes in the 2016 referendum but our MP was very much a remainer.
“I will campaign for the hardest possible Brexit.
“EU officials are threatening us with the message it will cost us millions of pounds to leave. I actually think they should be paying us.
“These overpaid, unelected bureaucrats are sat in their fancy buildings in Brussels – buildings our money have bought. I don’t understand why we should pay them a single penny to leave.”
Mr Noble. who joined UKIP in 2014, said he was opposed to any threat to Louth County Hospital, adding it has a vital role to play in the area.
He also said that if elected, he would campaign for a Horncastle bypass, adding transport links in the county were sub-standard.
He added: “Lincolnshire is controlled by the Conservatives yet we keep hearing it receives less funding than just about every other area in the country.”
Mr Noble went on to reveal UKIP would pledge to maintain the current level of EU subsides to farmers and claimed ‘most farmers’ were in favour of leaving the EU anyway.
UKIP did finish as runner-up in the 2015 election but Mr Noble admitted he faced a difficult task following on from Colin Mair, the party’s candidate last time around.
Mr Noble, who has spent almost 40 years in the teaching profession, added: “Colin did really well. I know he was a popular candidate but all I can do is work hard.”