James Sandbach

James Sandbach - Our Parliamentary Candidate for Ipswich

James Sandbach is our Liberal Democrat candidate for Ipswich in the General Election on 4 July.

About James

James is an experienced campaigner who has worked for leading charities and advice organisations. He has been a Town Councillor and stood in several elections before in Suffolk, including as Police and Crime Commissioner, and in previous general elections for neighbouring Suffolk Coastal and Central Suffolk and North Ipswich constituencies.

James campaigning

James writes:

"I am delighted to be standing to be MP for Ipswich, one of England's oldest towns. Having lived in Suffolk for over 10 years, I’ve always viewed Ipswich as the hub and heart of Suffolk, with all the great attributes of a small city. I say this because Ipswich is a city in all but name, and it’s astonishing that the Tory and Labour politicians who have led and represented Ipswich over recent years have failed to secure city status – just one of the issues I’d like to take up.

See below some of my other priorities for Ipswich."

James' Priorities for Ipswich

  • A welcoming and inclusive Ipswich – I’d like to support Ipswich communities in all their diversity. It’s to be welcomed and celebrated that the four-fold increase in Ipswich’s foreign-born population in the past generation has brought new cultures, languages and ethnic groups and made our Town multicultural. Tom Hunt’s rhetoric about immigrants and asylum seekers has been reprehensible – that’s not the Ipswich I see; I see a town that is welcoming, including as place of sanctuary.
  • An accessible, thriving, greener and connected Ipswich – Ipswich is a great place to live but congestion, bottlenecks and poor traffic management make Ipswich harder to navigate than it needs to be. We need to see strong measures to make Ipswich a place for residents rather than cars – I’d work with the borough Council to see what could be done to tackle this through cycle lanes, park and rides, and a low emission scheme. I’d support our local Councillors’ campaigns to get the Borough and County Councils to improve our green spaces whilst attending to the unmanaged scrub growth across roads and verges and drain blockages – this basic neglect is unacceptable.   


  • A safer and healthier Ipswich, helping people through the cost living crisis - Good public and community services and utilities are essential, especially for those having a tough time – the charity sector is having to fill the gap, with fuel and food vouchers in place of warmer homes and better pay. Fuel poverty is far higher in Ipswich than the rest of Suffolk; I would champion a retrofit campaign to make housing and buildings in Ipswich warmer and more energy efficient – a healthier environment both indoor and outdoor does much for wellbeing, and reducing demand on the NHS.
  • Boosting the Ipswich economy – I would work with business, schools and colleges, local and national government and enterprise partnerships to get Ipswich on the map as a skills hub. We need more local support for young people to transition through education, employment, and training.  But this is also linked to my other priorities; an Ipswich which is cleaner, greener, diverse and inclusive, with better public services, connectivity and infrastructure. This is the route to attracting inward investment, skills development and higher wages.   

Why bother, some people might ask?  In a constituency that electorally is usually marginal between the two large parties, shouldn’t the political priority be rejecting the embarrassingly bad Tory government and securing the opposition’s victory? 

Well sure, I want see the back of the Tories; but we need more than a change of Government, we need a change of governance. If the last 10 years have taught us anything, it’s surely that the system that rewards the two large parties leads to ever worse outcomes for citizens, a politics that’s out of touch, and to further disengagement.

Ipswich people deserve better.

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