A WAR of words has erupted between the North Cornwall Conservatives and their Liberal Democrat opposition, as a general election nears ever closer.

A social media advert on the page of the Lib Dem candidate Ben Maguire’s campaign page included a claim against the Conservative MP.

The claim read: “Ben Maguire is the Lib Dem parliamentary candidate for North Cornwall – the best local choice who will always put Cornwall first. North Cornwall has been totally neglected by the Conservatives – our MP has refused to speak for us since 2021.”

A spokesperson for Scott Mann’s office said: “The allegation that Scott has refused to speak for constituents since 2021 is completely false.

“Scott Mann MP was first appointed as a Government Whip by the late HM Queen Elizabeth II in 2021, and by long-standing Parliamentary convention, Whips do not speak in the House of Commons. As a Whip, Scott has been fully engaged in delivering landmark immigration legislation that Lib Dems in Westminster consistently vote against. He has the ear of the Government, meaning he has secured record investments in North Cornwall and delivered difficult reforms to tackle our housing issues.

"During his tenure as a Minister, Scott spoke at the despatch box and is regularly present in the House of Commons on the benches as part of his Government duties.

"Before his appointment, Scott spoke in the House of Commons from the back benches he made over 760 spoken and written contributions to the House. As a former House of Commons staff member, who presumably advised MPs on Parliamentary procedure, I am surprised that Mr Maguire is unaware of this, and we would be happy to supply him with a copy of Erskine May.

“Constituents are represented in many ways, not just through questions in Parliament; including the 65,000 individual cases the Member’s Office has actioned since 2015.

“Scott was busy speaking up for constituents and supporting North Cornwall businesses at the end of the pandemic in 2022, while Mr Maguire was coming fifth in the Blackheath Council election in London.

“It's clear to see who really cares about North Cornwall."

However, the claims were defended by Mr Maguire, who said: “Hansard records clearly show our Tory representative has failed to speak up for Cornwall in Parliament since 2021. That is despite the urgent crisis in Cornwall’s NHS where local residents can wait more than eighteen hours for an ambulance to arrive and can’t find an NHS dentist. Sewage is dumped in our rivers and seas and local people can’t afford to live here. Meanwhile we have nobody to speak up for us.

“As an employment solicitor I stand up for people everyday and I will be a relentless representative for North Cornwall”