Here are the issues the next MP for Fareham will face

Fareham town centre
Fareham town centre
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FAREHAM was voted as one of the best places to retire by an estate agent earlier this year – but as a constituency, it will keep an MP hard at work. 

A priority for any incoming or returning MP would be addressing the area’s three big issues: crime, housing developments, and the plight of the high street.

More than 86 per cent of the area's 111,600 residents are owner-occupiers, compared with the national average of 64 per cent, but Fareham is to see a massive increase in housebuilding.

The council is facing legislation from central government that could lead to more than 500 homes built every year, a proposal labelled 'bonkers' by the executive member for housing earlier in the year. 

One of the largest developments in the area, the 6,000 homes in Welborne, the so-called ‘garden village’, may become dependent on central government funding for a key piece of infrastructure, improvements to junction 10 on the M27.

The MP for Fareham will need to address the national need for affordable housing, while representing Fareham residents who are set to witness familiar landscape change beyond recognition.
And this increase in the area's population will put increased pressure on already strained services, with police presence being another pressing concern.

A public meeting in June saw impassioned residents decry the state of the town centre, which they said was plagued with crime and anti-social behaviour. Last month, a nuisance beggar  was banned from the town centre – less than six months after she breached a previous court order banning her from the area. 

Whilst the council has taken step to address begging and crime, legislation in Parliament can go along way to addressing complex problems like homelessness and drug-use and give the police more powers to deal with offences like persistent begging. 

These are problems the high street could do without at the best of times, but Fareham's town centre finds itself as exposed to sweeping economic trends as any other shopping district. 

Empty retail units remain across West Street, and the Fareham Shopping Centre has had to deal with the closure of BHS, a branch of Marks & Spencer, and a Topman store in the space of two years, among others. 

And then there is the problem of Brexit - or, for many Fareham residents, the problem that Brexit has not happened yet.

The majority – 55.1 per cent - of the 32,000 votes cast in the EU referendum were to leave the European Union.

Current MP Suella Braverman, who chaired the pro-Brexit European Research Group within the Conservative party, enjoyed a 56 per cent of the vote in 2015 election - and then 63 per cent in the 2017 election after the referendum.
A safe Conservative seat since its creation in 1974, it has seen four MPs represent the area, with the Labour candidate coming second in the 2017 election. 
The Brexit Party is not standing in the town, with voters instead choosing between Conservative, Labour, Lib Dem and Green candidates.
Whether any of the candidates will one day want to retire within the area will very much depend on the work they undertake.