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Westminster North: Tories accuse Labour of breaking election law by handing out leaflet near polling station

Hundreds of Labour supporters take to the streets in final push for key marginal

08 June, 2017 — By William McLennan

Eddie Izzard with Karen Buck in Queen’s Park this afternoon

CONSERVATIVES in Westminster North have accused their Labour rivals of breaching election regulations by handing out a leaflet near the entrance to a polling station.

Lindsey Hall’s team claimed to have witnessed a Labour supporter distributing a leaflet outside Paddington Green polling station. They have complained to Westminster City Council chief executive Charlie Parker.

The council downplayed the complaint and a spokesman said: “We are aware of this one off issue. We have been in contact with the local Labour agent and it was resolved very quickly.”

The Polling Stations Bill states that “it shall be an offence to engage in campaigning activity within a prescribed area around a polling station”.

Labour candidate Karen Buck said she had not been made aware of the complaint, but said that they had hundreds of Labour volunteers on the streets of the constituency today.

She added: “When you’ve got hundreds of people you always risk somebody doing something a few feet too close [to the polling station]. But then they’ll be told to stop and they will.”

Ms Buck was joined by comedian Eddie Izzard and political commentator Owen Jones earlier today as Labour supporters from Westminster North and beyond took to the streets of what is being viewed as a key London marginal.

Ms Buck saw off a challenge from Ms Hall in 2015, winning by a margin of 1,977 votes at the end of a tense night.

She accepted it would go down to the wire again tonight, but said they had received a “warmer” reception on the doorstep today, adding: “As it has done for most of the campaign.”

One of those out knocking on doors on Ms Buck’s behalf today said the “general feeling is that we’re going to hold the seat”.

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