With less than two weeks until polling day, we've been asking Parliamentary candidates in Hertsmere why they deserve your vote.

There are six candidates vying to become the MP for Hertsmere, so we asked them why you should be voting for them.

Oliver Dowden - The Conservative Party

I am proud to be standing again to be your Conservative Member of Parliament for Hertsmere.

I have known this area my entire life. I was born and grew up here, and still live in the area with my wife and two children. My dad worked in a wire factory in Watford and my mum worked in the Boots in London Colney. I went to Parmiter's School near Watford and then won a place to study Law at Cambridge University.

Oliver Dowden.Oliver Dowden. (Image: Oliver Dowden)

I firmly believe in values of hard work and family, and believe that these are values of the people of Hertsmere.

I am passionate about preserving the things that make Hertsmere such a special place to live. We are so lucky to have the best of both worlds here, where we can enjoy the open countryside and have easy access to London. This is something I will always fight to preserve.

I will continue to work locally and nationally to promote our communities best interest, including defending our green spaces, delivering better transport and education, and supporting the diverse local community.

I also have the honour of serving as the Deputy Prime Minister. In these difficult and uncertain times, I believe I have the experience, character and values to best represent our community.

I humbly ask you to put your faith in me on July 4.

Ray Bolster - Independent 

Veteran anti-racism campaigner Ray Bolster has entered the fray as an independent candidate in Hertsmere, naming Honesty and Integrity as his main goals.

As a long-time human rights advocate who fought against anti-Semitism in London’s East End in the 1960s and a founder of the Watford Anti-Racist committee in the 1970s, Ray is calling for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza.

Ray Bolster.Ray Bolster. (Image: Ray Bolster)

He is appalled at both the Conservatives’ and Labour’s failure to condemn the violence, ethnic cleansing and war crimes against the people of Gaza.

“The situation in Gaza is dire. Most of those killed have been women and children,” said Ray. “The survivors are being starved, displaced and confronted with a mental trauma we cannot begin to comprehend. I am committed to bringing international attention to this genocide and fighting for justice for the Palestinian people.”

As a former RAF Medical Corps Corporal in Singapore and Ceylon (now Sri Lanka), protecting the NHS is a top priority on Ray’s agenda. He will campaign for more funding to improve patient care and reduce waiting times.

He will push for high-quality education for children and life-long learning opportunities for adults.

As a Hertsmere resident since the 1970s, Ray is an experienced community organiser and the fight to save the greenbelt is particularly close to his heart.

He has practical plans to address the challenges that Hertsmere faces and will lobby for affordable housing to tackle homelessness.

Ray is urging people to vote for him for a better Britain and a better world.

John Humphries - Green Party 

I am standing for election in Hertsmere because everyone should be able to vote for the Green Party. Our manifesto spells out our principles and priorities for the new Parliament.

Greens want to create a fairer future for us all – this means access to free health and social care, it means access to childcare and education, to work opportunities, to housing and a clean and safe environment in which to thrive.

John Humphries.John Humphries. (Image: Green Party)

Shenley has been our family home for almost three decades. We chose to live in Hertsmere for its beautiful countryside and convenient transport connections. One of my hobbies is hiking and Hertsmere has excellent wooded, open-country, and riverside walks. It’s a perfect base wherever my management consulting and training business takes me.

I’m determined that the rural aspects of Hertsmere are protected and enhanced; that we have better access to NHS services, GPs, hospitals, dentists and social care; that our roads become safer for all users; and that appropriate infrastructure is developed given the need for more housing.

If elected, my priorities for Hertsmere are to build the right homes, in the right places at the right price for everyone. To protect and enhance our green belt, woodlands and rivers essential for our well-being, improve insulation and ventilation of homes to keep people comfortable, and care for nature, supporting ecosystems and biodiversity.

Emma Matanle - Liberal Democrat

This is the worst government the UK has ever had, but you can change that at the next General Election.

Our public sector is dying. As a former aid worker with the United Nations in Afghanistan, I learnt that giving the community access to healthcare and education gets the economy moving, and the country then thrives. With millions of us in the UK waiting for healthcare, with many of those out of work because they can’t get the treatment they need, this country is flat-lining.

Emma Matanle.Emma Matanle. (Image: Liberal Democrats)

And it needn’t be like that. It’s about choices and political priorities. As a parent, raising my family for the last 25 years, here in Hertfordshire, I’ve used the local state services and have seen the decline first hand. Nothing works anymore. Local issues are important, but so are international, and with my background in international security, development and law, I’m well placed to understand foreign policy issues.

I’m often asked, why did you get involved in politics? The short answer is injustice and inequality. We’ve been lied to by this government, had our services stripped to the bone whilst they rewarded themselves and their mates with taxpayers’ money: it has to stop.

Bruce Darren Selkus - Reform UK

I am a proud resident of Hertsmere, and refuses to be just another cog in the political machine. Disillusioned by the empty promises and lack of accountability from mainstream politicians, I have taken on the role of Reform UK PPC for Hertsmere with a fierce determination to challenge the status quo.

A former British Army veteran, I brings with him a wealth of leadership experience and a deep sense of duty to his community. As the CEO of UV Group Plc, I understands the importance of effective leadership and practical solutions. Married with two kids and two dogs, my personal life grounds him in the everyday realities of the people he aims to represent.

Darren Selkus.Darren Selkus. (Image: Reform UK)

My journey into politics was catalysed by the aftermath of the 2016 Brexit referendum, where I witnessed the disregard for the democratic process first-hand. This spurred me to join the Brexit Party and eventually become the Prospective Parliamentary Candidate for Epping Forest. Since then, my passion for reform and accountability has only grown stronger.

My platform is bold and unapologetic. I advocate for a smaller state where individuals have more control over their lives. I am staunchly opposed to the Net Zero agenda, viewing it as economically damaging and environmentally ineffective. I am committed to reducing taxes, fostering economic growth, and implementing sensible immigration policies. Furthermore, I aim to overhaul public services, including the NHS, to ensure they are efficient and accessible to all.

For me, politics is not about personal gain; it's about making a tangible difference in the lives of ordinary people. In the General Election on the July 4, I look forward to taking on the incumbent MP, Oliver Dowden, and hold the Westminster establishment accountable.

In a political landscape marred by apathy and disillusionment, I stand out as a beacon of hope for those yearning for real change. With his unwavering dedication, military discipline, and business acumen, I am poised to challenge the entrenched interests and truly represent the voices of Hertsmere.

If you want change, you have to change your vote. I am here to lead that change.

Josh Tapper - Labour Party

After years of Conservative chaos families are worse off, less safe and have fewer opportunities. As your MP I’ll focus on improving our economy so that families thrive.

I want to see more police on the streets dealing with anti-social behaviour and burglaries. Labour will get the NHS back on its feet, switch on Great British Energy, and break down the barriers to opportunity.

Josh Tapper.Josh Tapper. (Image: Labour)

Seeing how pressure to attend university can overshadow other paths is why I’ve been an advocate for apprenticeships and championed education reform.

I’ve pioneered institutional change to mental health and wellbeing services within the Civil Service and championed green belt and open spaces.

Being Hertsmere’s first Labour MP, I’ll be committed to doing politics differently, raising standards in public life, and showing that we can have something better than Conservative turmoil, with our MP at the helm as Deputy PM.

Some might recognise me from Gogglebox - but since then, I’ve leveraged my platform to advocate for social policy reform and hold this government accountable on national media.

Hertsmere has shaped who I am - it has given me everything: My education, my first job, my community. Now I want to give this special place everything I can.