THE Conservative MP for Leigh has hit back at criticism that his party are putting families in the town under more financial strain.

According to Labour Party’s own data, 11,500 families in MP James Grundy’s constituency face an annual mortgage payment increase of £1,650. 

Labour’s analysis that the average household in Leigh is set to be put under more pressure than ever – something they are claiming is due to Conservative mismanagement of the economy.

Using 2021 Census data requested from the House of Commons Library, the calculations are based on estimates of the proportion of households in each constituency who own their home with a mortgage or loan. 

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The predicted mortgage increase follows the Bank of England warning in December that around half of households with a mortgage, a total of 4 million, will be exposed to rate rises this year, and Bloomberg reporting that around 800,000 will see their mortgage rates double.

Leigh Journal: Labour candidate for Leigh Jo PlattLabour candidate for Leigh Jo Platt (Image: Jo Platt)

Jo Platt, Labour’s Parliamentary Candidate for Leigh said: “The Tory mortgage penalty is devastating for family finances and is holding back our economy.

"The country is buckling under 13 years of Conservative mismanagement, and its families being asked to pay more on their mortgage once again. 

“People are asking themselves whether they or their family are better off under the Tories. The answer is no. 

“By stabilising the economy, making it stronger and getting it growing, Labour will stop us lurching from crisis to crisis, and make Britain thrive again.”

This claim by the Labour Party and former Leigh MP Jo Platt has been refuted by her 2019 election successor James Grundy.

His position is that this is an inflation problem felt across Europe, and not just in the UK.

Leigh Journal: Mr Grundy has hit back at Labour's criticismMr Grundy has hit back at Labour's criticism (Image: James Grundy MP)

“Interest rates across Europe have risen as a result of the inflation caused by both the aftermath of Covid and the war in Ukraine, the largest component of that being increased energy prices,” Mr Grundy stated.

“Both of these issues have caused similar economic problems across Europe, and for Labour and Jo Platt to pretend that this issue is unique to the UK is deeply dishonest, given inflation in the UK has been similar to that of Germany.

“This shoddy Labour press release has no solutions to the problems Britain faces. Merely complaining about things does not change them.

“It is clear that Labour remains unfit for government and will remain so until they start offering solutions instead of just moaning ineffectually.”

Recently, the IMF chief economist singled out higher mortgage rates as a reason for Britain’s poor performance after the country’s growth was downgraded, leaving it as the only major economy expected to shrink in 2023.