Home Secretary James Cleverly visited Harpenden as the Conservatives hit the campaign trail in two key Hertfordshire seats.

Mr Cleverly joined James Spencer and Nigel Gardner, Conservative candidates for the St Albans and Harpenden and Berkhamsted constituencies respectively.

The pair toured the Home Secretary around the Harpenden area and visited local businesses.

Mr Gardner said: "It was wonderful to welcome the Home Secretary to Harpenden.

"We took a stroll along the High Street and listened to both residents and business owners who are apoplectic about the councils ill thought out parking plans.

"We need to save our pensioners parking permits and make parking on the High Street as simple as possible. Otherwise our town will pay the price."

Mr Spencer is aiming to unseat Liberal Democrat deputy leader Daisy Cooper. Ms Cooper won the seat by 6,000 votes, gaining the seat from the Tories back in 2019.

He said: "The message the Home Secretary gave to residents and business owners was clear. The choice at the next election is either a government led by Rishi Sunak or one led by Sir Keir Starmer and Angela Rayner.

"In both St Albans and Harpenden and Berkhamsted, a vote for any other party other than the Conservatives risks letting Labour in." 

While polls suggest Labour are unlikely to win in St Albans, a Liberal Democrat win in a traditionally Conservative seat would still indirectly help Sir Keir's bid to reach number 10.

Harpenden and Berkhamsted is a new constituency, born out of the ashes of the old Hitchin and Harpenden seat following 2022's boundary review.

Mr Gardner is seeking to become the first MP for the area, but polls suggest the Liberal Democrats to be on course to take the seat.

Read more:

• St Albans: Meet Conservative candidate James Spencer

What are the polls saying in Herts?

• Lib Dems launch campaign to win new Harpenden & Berkhamsted seat

In St Albans, Mr Spencer and Ms Cooper are joined on the ballot paper by Sophia Adams Bhatti (Labour), Simon Grover (Green Party), Stewart Sattlerly (Social Democratic Party) and Sam Woodruff (Reform UK).

The other candidates in Harpenden and Berkhamsted are: Zara Layne (Labour), Victoria Collins (Liberal Democrats), Paul de Hoest (Green Party), Saba Poursaeed (Reform UK) and Sina Gharib (Workers Party).