WELL, it’s that time of year again. Bonfire Night and Halloween have been and gone.

We’ve turned the clocks back, ushering in dark evenings.

My birthday is just a couple days away and our good friends in America are gearing up for Thanksgiving.

All of which means there’s another big event involving the whole country just around the corner. You’ve guessed it, a general election.

Oh what a Christmas treat. Never mind planning your turkey and tinsel or getting the ‘emergency chairs’ out of the loft or wondering if you will have enough alcohol to see you through to New Year.

This festive season, you can have the delights of shuffling through the gathering gloom to the school room or community centre or wherever it is you cast your vote.

You have to go back to 1974 for the last time we had a winter election (there were, in fact two that year in February and October) and no, I wasn’t old enough to vote in either.

Since then, our politicians have had the good sense to only go to the polls when the sun is shining, in April, May and June. It’s almost impossible to predict what the effect will be of holding a general election at a time when people should be opening their advent calendars and history is no help, given the last time we had a December election was in 1923.

Anyway, on to the pre-yuletide battles as it affects us here.

Since its inception in 1983, Warrington North has been what can only be described as a safe seat for Labour, held first by Doug Hoyle (now Lord Hoyle, of Warrington) and since 1997 by Helen Jones until she announced last week that she would be standing down.

So theoretically, Warrington North is a pretty dull constituency (I’m not being insulting, I just mean it has never thrown up any interesting political outcomes). And maybe when it comes to actual polling day it will prove to be unremarkable again.

There are just two problems with that hypothesis. The first is the Brexit unknown. Warrington North voted strongly in favour of leaving the EU (58.07 per cent) in the 2016 referendum and I wonder how that will play out.

The second unknown is literally that, an unknown candidate for Labour who has been parachuted.

According to reporter Aran Dhillon, there had been interest in the (all-woman) candidate shortlist from a number of people including Cllr Amanda King, deputy council leader Cllr Cathy Mitchell.

My money was on Amanda King but no, we got instead activist Charlotte Nichols, 28, who describes herself on Twitter as Jewish, a trade union officer and a socialist. And it also states she is based in London.

I really don’t know how any of that relates to Warrington and how she will fare when she comes face to face with Warrington’s voters.

Warrington South, on the other hand, is anything but dull. It is often seen as a bellwether seat and is most definitely a marginal constituency. It has changed hands between the Tories and Labour and has been won by the largest party in each Parliament at every election with the exception of 1992, when it was taken by Labour’s Mike Hall, and 2017 when it was taken by Faisal Rashid – somewhat against the odds.

And because it is so marginal it’s been selected as one of the ‘Remain Alliance’ seats, meaning the Green Party has withdrawn its candidate to give the Lib Dems a better chance of winning in a bid to stop Brexit.

Maybe there will be a Lib Dem surge this time. I wonder if lessons can be drawn from history.

Think back to the general election of 2010 and ‘Cleggmania’.

But what happened in Warrington South that year? Well, looking at the results, it very much looks like the Lib Dems split the vote with David Mowat of the Conservatives coming through to take the seat by just 1,553 votes ahead of Nick Bent.

Will we witness history repeating itself this year, I wonder?