The Liberal Democrats have selected a Barnstaple trainee solicitor as their candidate to fight the General Election.

Alex White was chosen at a hustings of local party members in Barnstaple on Friday, November 1.

If elected, he would succeed Peter Heaton-Jones as MP after he announced this week that he would be standing down from parliament at the next election for personal reasons.

North Devon Lib Dems was forced to change its prospective parliamentary candidate at the 11th hour after previous candidate Dr Kirsten Johnson resigned in September.

It happened after an awkward radio interview led to a 'race row' when she said the local population was 98 per cent white'.

Mr White went to Chulmleigh Community College and studied at Warwick University, before working in London and then returning to Devon to do a masters degree at Exeter University.

Since graduating he has worked as a county court advocate and a trainee solicitor with a Barnstaple firm.

Speaking after his selection, he said: "I am extremely proud to have been selected as the Lib Dem candidate for North Devon, with its long and prestigious legacy of Liberal support.

"North Devon will need to decide what sort of MP they want; an MP who will always do the Government's bidding and follow the party line or a strong, independently-minded campaigner, like me, who will stand up for local people and do what is best for the people of North Devon.

"If elected, I intend to champion the issues that are important to the people of North Devon - the NHS, education, the environment, farming, tourism and local industry.

"My priority is to ensure that our farmers do not lose out in relation to European subsidies and that North Devon manufacturers have the maximum opportunity to export to Europe."

Mr White is also a member of Chulmleigh Tennis Club and used to play football for South Molton.

He has also spent time as an advisor to UNICEF and campaigned on a HIV awareness campaign.

He is a former youth parliament member for North Devon and was first elected when he was 12-years-old.