A high profile politician paid a visit to Bridport and discussed local issues with people in the town.

MP Barry Gardiner, shadow Secretary of State for international trade and shadow minister for international climate change, popped into Bridport for a surprise visit on Friday afternoon.

He visited the Community Orchard, where he was introduced to new Labour councillors Rose Allwork and Sarah Carney from Bridport, and 19-year-old Leon Howe from Lyme Regis.

Mr Gardiner had stopped off on his way to an environmental conference in Cornwall, and went on to spend time with people in the Woodman pub. He discussed local as well as global topics, such as climate change initiatives and Labour’s plans for a Green Industrial Revolution.

Councillors also put forward their pleas on the need for improvements in rural public transport and affordable housing supply. Discussions even involved Brexit, and members’ concerns about the implications of both remain and Brexit trade deals for the NHS.

Mark Gage, West Dorset constituency Labour Party chairman, said: "Labour members from Dorchester, Bridport and Lyme were really pleased to meet Barry who took time to provide clear and really detailed answers to their intense questioning."

Sally Meadows, Bridport and District branch officer, added: "He was a real inspiration to us in taking forward our campaigning … such a warm and genuine guy, you can’t fake that."