FORMER Labour Barrow and Furness MP John Woodcock has urged people to vote Conservative in the upcoming election.

Mr Woodcock, who resigned from Labour last year to sit as an independent, said he would be voting Conservative and urged others to follow him.

He was speaking at the launch of a poster by the Mainstream campaign against political extremism.

The poster calls Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn 'a disgrace to his party, a disgrace to this country'.

Mr Woodcock, who announced this week that he would not stand for re-election in Barrow and Furness, 'pleaded' with Labour supporters to 'face up' to the choice of Mr Johnson or Mr Corbyn and to not 'leave it until too late'.

Speaking in Westminster, he warned: “Now all of that to an extent is water under the bridge, but we have arrived in a campaign where one of two people are going to be Prime Minister...

“The choice to keep Jeremy Corbyn away from Downing Street, to stop him getting his hands on the levers of national security and defence has to be to vote Conservative in this election and that’s what I’ll be doing as well.”

His comments drew criticism from the Barrow and Furness Labour Party general election candidate, Chris Altree.

He said: “It really does not come as a great surprise that Mr Woodcock has taken this position, since he has been behaving like a Conservative for some time and there is evidence of this in the things he has said and the way he has voted in parliament.

“His anti-Labour stance has been received with disappointment by many local party members who gave Mr Woodcock huge amounts of time and financial resources that helped him get elected to the House of Commons on three occasions.”

Mr Woodcock quit Labour with a scathing attack on Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership last year.

He had been sitting as an independent since having the Labour whip withdrawn in April 2018 pending investigation of an allegation, which he denies, of sexual harassment.

Mr Woodcock is due to take up a role with the government as a counter-terrorism envoy.

The Liberal Democrats and Green party have both announced their candidates for Barrow and Furness.

Loraine Birchall will stand for the Lib Dems and Chris Loynes will be the Green candidate.

Mr Loynes said: "This is the climate election – the time to turn the tide on carbon emissions and biodiversity loss."

They will go up against Conservative Simon Fell, who has lost in Barrow in the last two elections.