Beer drinkers in garden of the Fisherman's Arms pub. British fishing communities, like Hartlepool, were some of the strongest supporters of Brexit but many now feel betrayed as small increases in fishing quotas have been offset by massive increases in red tape making it more difficult to export to the EU, a principal market for British fishing.
Hartlepool has always voted Labour, including in the last General Election, when many neighbouring areas in Labour's so-called 'Red Wall' switched to the Conservatives for the first time, predominately in support of Brexit. Hartlepool is about to vote again on 6 May 2021 in a by-election with some polls predicting it will also shift to the Tories as people who voted for the Brexit Party in 2019 will now vote Conservative. The election is seen as a 'must-win' for Labour's leader Keir Starmer in order to demonstrate an ability to start winning back traditional Labour seats in the UK's northern wards. Labour is pinning its hopes on a deluge of recent news about 'Tory Sleaze' and corruption inside the Conservative Party linked closely to the Prime Minister, Boris Johnson.