Potholes, immigration and welfare reforms have been pinpointed as key issues in the race to win Boston’s seats on Lincolnshire County Council.
The parties have given their verdict on the key issues they believe will be debated before people go to the polls on May 2.
Conservative councillor Peter Bedford, who also leads Boston Borough Council, told The Standard that he hopes his party will be able to add to their tally of seats - making it a Tory clean sweep for the borough’s seven county seats.
He said: “I would hope we can go one better than last time. I always think it is very, very difficult to knock out a sitting councillor if they have done thier work properly.
“I know our councillors have worked very, very hard over the last four years for Boston and Lincolnshire as a whole.”
He said he expects the two key issues to be immigration and the state of the county’s roads, with the harsh winter leaving many potholes.
He said he welcomes the challenge of UKIP, which is fielding candidates in every seat, but said he felt voting for the party would be a wasted vote.
He told The Standard: “I think a vote for UKIP would be a vote for Labour.”
Labour election organiser Paul Kenny, who is also a borough councillor, said his party will be fighting on the issue of welfare changes, which he feels will impact on people in Boston.
Coun Kenny said: “I think that’s going to really impact on the people of Boston and I think the Conservatives have made a fundamental error. People are angry because they don’t know why they are being penalised.”
He said his party wants to see better youth facilities, assurances over school places and for a strategy to be put in place for public health.
UKIP’s Don Ransome said he was delighted to be able to contest all seven Boston seats and hopes to win at least one of the contests here.
He said: “The mood swing on the streets is amazing - we have never been so popular.”
He said is confident that the party can prove it is not merely a protest vote, with a manifesto of policies that are relevant at county council level.
He added: “We have got an enormous range of policies. We are not talking about the EU at these elections, we are talking about wheelie bins, potholes and street lights because those are some of the critical issues for our county councillors.”
Alison Austin, Robert Lauberts and Richard Dungworth are standing for the Lincolnshire Independents group, while independents Anne Dorrian, Ossy Snell, Carol Taylor are also contesting seats.