Even though the country’s next general election might not occur until 2025, many MPs have already said whether or not they will be running.

West Oxfordshire Liberal Democrat members have selected Charlie Maynard as their parliamentary candidate for the next general election.

Mr Maynard took the Standlake, Aston and Stanton Harcourt district council seat earlier this year with a 19 per cent swing from the Conservatives.

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He said: “I’m so fed up with where we are headed. Over the last six to 10 years we have been going in the wrong direction.

"I never thought I would get involved in politics but I realized I wanted to do my bit. 

“The recent doubling in mortgage rates—due almost entirely to government error—is just one example of this.

"At a national level, we need a much better relationship with Europe and a fairer society in terms of inequality, tax and electoral systems.”

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He said Robert Courts was "consistently out of step with local residents by voting against protecting our rivers and waterways from sewage".

“Residents across West Oxfordshire know there is an alternative. Many already know what it means to have a hard-working Liberal Democrat councillor, and my aim is to deliver Witney a hard-working MP that is on their side.”

Mr Maynard stepped back from his own business, BDA Partners, two years ago.

He is Chair of Witney Oxford Transport Group, which is campaigning to restore a rail line linking Witney and Carterton with Oxford.

He is married to Sophie Roell, a Lib Dem activist and editor of the website Five Books, and they live with their three teenage children between Witney and Stanton Harcourt.

He said: “We’ve got some really capable councillors doing some really good work. I would not be running if I did not think I could do it.

"But we have a 15,000 majority to take down so there’s work to do."

Witney MP Robert Courts has said he will also stand at the next General Election.

He said: “As we get nearer to the General Election, other political parties will select their candidates.

"I look forward to contesting the next General Election on my proud record not only of delivering for Witney and West Oxfordshire, but of providing strong, truly local, energetic representation all year round - not just at election time."

Proposed boundary changes, due to be decided next summer, will affect areas to the north and east of the existing constituency.

Under the proposals Chipping Norton and Charlbury will move into Banbury county constituency (CC) and Woodstock and Eynsham will move into the new Bicester and Woodstock CC.

Five wards will be added to the Witney constituency from the Vale of White Horse which are Faringdon, Kingston Bagpuize, Stanford, Thames, and Watchfield and Shrivenham.

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Mr Courts said: "It is a privilege to represent Witney and West Oxfordshire on the existing boundaries, and I would be privileged to continue to do so on any boundaries that the independent Boundary Commission decided were appropriate.”

West Oxfordshire Labour Party said it had not yet begun selecting a candidate but will do so next year.

Labour councillor Duncan Enright said: "It is all up for grabs, given Labour's huge lead in the national polls and local position, and also given the changes in boundaries to create new Witney, Bicester and Banbury seats which are very different from the current ones.

"Witney includes strong Labour areas in the town, and excludes areas where other parties have councillors."



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This story was written by Miranda Norris, she joined the team in 2021 and covers news across Oxfordshire as well as news from Witney.

Get in touch with her by emailing: Miranda.Norris@newsquest.co.uk. Or find her on Twitter: @Mirandajnorris

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