AS Northwich prepares to head to the polls on December 12, the Guardian will be interviewing all candidates in mid Cheshire.

Here, Nicholas Goulding, Brexit Party candidate for Weaver Vale, tells us how a vote for him can help realign politics to people.

Tell us a bit about yourself…

I came up to the north west because I was employed by the Forum of Private Business in Knutsford. That involved me lobbying with Westminster and Whitehall, trying to get the rules and regulations that affect small businesses improved.

Having run an organisation that represented small businesses, I thought I really needed a small business of my own. I wanted one that was locally based, I did not want to be gallivanting the world as I was doing – heading over to Brussels once or twice a week.

The trouble was, they don’t do a lot of political lobbying in Northwich, so I needed something different. So the main challenge was finding something to. And then rather by coincidence I fell upon taxis.

The other stand of my life is in the army. I was in the Gloucestershire regiment, I served in Berlin and other places. I was then in the Territorial Army where my final thing was a tour in Baghdad in 2007.

Why are you running for the Brexit Party?

When the referendum came along I was minded to vote leave. I could have gone either way, but my view was that even if it is worth staying in now, the EU is a moving target, they have a concept of ever-closer union.

I felt that that sooner or later, the EU is going to take one step too far and we are not going to want it, and we will leave. So I thought if we are going to leave, we might as well do it now.

However, after the campaign when the politicians in Westminster stuck their heels in and failed to implement the clear instruction from the people, I felt that was an abdication of democracy and really they needed to be held to task.

The whole aim of the Brexit Party is to keep on the coattails of the Conservatives to make sure they deliver on the promise of the referendum result, and I think we are succeeding in that.

But it’s not just a question of Brexit now. It is that the political system has detached itself from the people and frankly that needs to be sorted out. We need to realign politics to people.

‘Brexit’ means different things to different people, it doesn’t seem as clear-cut as it felt in 2016, so where do you draw the line on what ‘Brexit’ actually is?

Attitudes have hardened since the referendum. What might have been acceptable if the deal was done quickly is not acceptable now.

We were clearly not voting for the European court to continue to have authority over UK regulations, we were clearly not voting to continue paying into the EU, we were clearly not voting for a border in the Irish Sea.

There are a whole range of things – and if they say that it was not clear, I don’t know how they could say that with a straight face. No one can have any doubt we meant a clean break where we could make our own trading relationship with other countries.

We say ‘hard Brexit’ but what we really mean is the Brexit people voted for. Now there would have always been a bit of give or take, but I think there would have been a lot more give or take had they done something quickly.

What benefits would Brexit bring to Weaver Vale?

If you’re seriously considering Brexit, you need to be talking a 30 to 40-year horizon.

I don’t think in one or two years people will see much difference at all, and what they will be wondering to themselves is ‘what was all that fuss about?’

But if we look at the future of the country, that 30 to 40-year horizon is what it takes to shift things. The fact we’ve got such a strong economy now is the result of the reforms that Margaret Thatcher made in the 1980s.

And the real thing she changed was the attitude of people here. They felt that success was something to be applauded, they recognised that Governments needed to work within their means but that individuals could deliver prosperity. That’s not what people thought in the 1970s.

When we are free from the EU – because we will be able to make our own decisions and make arrangements with parts of the world that are growing more strongly – we will demonstrate we are in a better position to prosper than had we remained in the EU.

Also, we had decades of blaming other people for everything that went wrong. If there was some rule that went wrong, politicians’ line of first call was to blame Brussels.

Actually a lot of it was done by ourselves but they liked to have the excuse, and I prefer being in the position where the buck stops with us, and there is no one else to blame but ourselves.

And for voters here in particular?

We need to address the divide in this country between the London-centric investment we have had – and that is one of the real drawbacks of the EU.

The north of the country used to be the real driver economically right through the 19th century – this is where the mills were, the mines, the steelworks – all the things that drove the economy.

When our trade is focused more externally – and we are facing the world rather than facing Europe – Liverpool is a natural port for that. It can be a major port for imports and exports, and the areas surrounding it in the north west can benefit – particularly if we put money into transport links.

So we have a fantastic opportunity with Brexit to re-energise the parts of the country that have been in the doldrums because of the focus south and east, to the EU. If you trade everything through Dover, that is where the money will go.

Will businesses think the same way though, or would they carry on as they are now, focused on London?

Private businesses seize the opportunities where they are. The people who prefer the EU from the business side are the corporates that prosper in a bureaucratic world where they can leverage their influence to get an advantage over smaller competitors.

They will have to face the reality of competition here, and they will become better businesses as a result, they just won’t like it in the short term.

Let’s talk about the NHS. A&E performance has hit a record low – how can it be turned around?

With the NHS, housing, education, the underlying problem we have is that we have five or six million more people than we did a decade ago, and we have had to have austerity.

So the solution – firstly, we need to get out of all of those PFI contracts Gordon Brown thought were a good idea and get control of our expenditure.

We do need to put some more money in, but it’s mainly not a question of money, there are a whole bunch of ways I think management can be improved.

But above all we need to close the doors and ensure that our population does not keep going up by 400,000 every year – because if it does, we will never reach a point where we can get the resources in place.

Then we need to make sure we have the training in place to make sure we are producing enough our own personnel from people that live and work here, and don’t have the language difficulties some members of staff have.

As a stop gap measure, some members of staff from other countries have done sterling service and all credit to them, they make a valuable contribution. But it is not where we should be aiming for the future.

Turn off the taps of particularly low-skilled migration so we are not overloading the services, train people here and as the economy prospers we can invest the money to ensure that we resolve the issues that presently exist.

There are a lot of workers from abroad in important low-skilled jobs – such as hospital cleaners or farm hands – that British workers don’t want to take on at the moment. Are you sure we could encourage young British people to take on those jobs after Brexit?

One of the reasons the less skilled people from this country have done so badly in the last 25 years is because we have opened the floodgates on less skilled migration – it has not only kept down wages, it has also meant the investment in training and capital equipment has been reduced.

As long as it is not dropped on you like a stone from a great height, which would cause disruption, if we close the taps steadily and increase the minimum wage rate steadily – those two forces would push businesses into making the investments they need.

Will businesses be ready for that?

Some people will do better than others. Some businesses will fall by the wayside because they are not able to adapt as well as others.

But their colleagues will prosper – and that is the way capitalism benefits people in the round, because it encourages efficient businesses, and they are the ones that pay people higher salaries and put more prosperity into communities.

What’s your view on HS2?

HS2 is an appalling white elephant. It is so appalling that I cannot explain why on earth the main parties wish to continue doing it. I don’t think you will find a person round here in favour of it.

It will suck investment in the south, it will displace infrastructure expenditure on other things, and even if you could justify it in its own right – that investment put into something else could generate a far higher return.

So how would you spend that money instead?

Well I think there is a big case for improving infrastructure. If we are turning our country to look more westwards, to the Atlantic, we need the effective rail and road links from the ports on the west coast across the country.

But there are also 1,001 local infrastructure improvements that would make a real difference to people’s lives – from large scale things to small scale things.

Where the railway line from Northwich to Chester crosses the line from Winsford to Runcorn, it would be perfectly easy to put in a station so people could easily transfer from one to the other, but at the moment you have to walk between Hartford and Greenbank. How stupid is that?

We could have more stock, more frequent services so people can depend on the railway, it could integrate with the Metrolink so you can go straight into Manchester, and I would run trains to Middlewich.

There are thousands of examples like that. If you are going to spend £80 billion I would say put it into all those sort of things, great and small, the difference you would make to the economy would outweigh anything HS2 could do. And it would be done much more quickly.

Finally, you have a day off – no work or campaigning to do. How would you spend your ideal day in Cheshire?

I would be walking the dogs out in the countryside. I live in Lostock Green where all the brinefields are. There is a nice network of paths, I can walk to Plumley, I can walk back through the fields, I can see Jodrell Bank in the distance, the old ICI plants, the evidence of human workings.

I like being out in the countryside in the summer and the winter, walking the dogs and enjoying the environment of Cheshire.