Lana Hempsall, the Conservative parliamentary candidate for Norwich South has received criticism after a photo appeared in a leaflet of her posing outside of the City of Norwich School (CNS) in Eaton.
Initially, some parents whose children attend CNS were angered by the possibility that the school was endorsing the Conservative candidate by appearing in their campaign literature. The leaflet had been sent to homes in the school’s constituency, and had Mrs Hempsall’s views on education placed next to a photo of her posing with the school’s sign.
In response to this criticism, CNS and Mrs Hempsall have both stated that the photo was not a political endorsement and was legally taken in a public area.
CNS posted to their Twitter and Facebook accounts to clarify this to its students and their parents. On June 2 the school wrote a tweet saying “You may have seen local Conservative campaign literature featuring the school sign today. CNS does NOT endorse any political party.”
In another tweet, the school responded to a parent who asked whether Mrs Hempsall sought permission to use the photo. They said “No. The school does not endorse any political party. The picture was taken on a public right of way however.”
Mrs Hempsall has said she is pleased with the school’s reaction. She has since stated that “It was just a photo outside a school, taken on a public highway. There’s nothing more to it than that.”
However, some parents took to Twitter to voice their dissatisfaction with the candidate’s choice of photo. One parent said she was “very angry”, and suggested that Mrs Hempsall is “a disgrace at CNS”, where the Conservative candidate recently appeared for a hustings with the other party candidates.