Conservative Candidates

The following seats have selected Conservative candidates for the next general election:
Page last updated 29th Dec 2014

Aberdeen South - Ross Thomson (Labour majority 3506, Con in 3rd)
Aberdeenshire West & Kincardine - Alexander Burnett (Lib Dem majority 3684)
Alyn & Deeside - Laura Knightly (Labour majority 2919)
Angus - Derek Wann (SNP majority 3282)
Argyll & Bute - Alastair Redman (Lib Dem majority 3431)
Ayr, Carrick & Cumnock - Lee Lyons (Labour majority 9911)
Ayrshire Central - Marc Hope (Labour majority 12007)
Banbury - Victoria Prentis (Conservative majority 18227)
Barking - Mina Rahman (Labour majority 16555)
Barrow & Furness - Simon Fell (Labour majority 5208)
Bassetlaw - Sarah Downes (Labour majority 8215)
Bath - Ben Howlett (Lib Dem majority 11883)
Batley & Spen - Imtiaz Ameen (Labour majority 4406)
Berwickshire, Roxburgh & Selkirk - John Lamont (Lib Dem majority 5675)
Berwick-upon-Tweed - Anne-Marie Trevelyan (Lib Dem majority 2690)
Bethnal Green & Bow - Matthew Smith (Labour majority 11574, Con in 4th)
Bexhill & Battle - Huw Merriman (Conservative majority 12880)
Birkenhead - Clark Vasey (Labour majority 15395)
Birmingham, Edgbaston - Luke Evans (Labour majority 1274)
Birmingham, Erdington - Robert Alden (Labour majority 3277)
Birmingham, Hall Green - James Bird (Labour majority 3799, Con in 4th)
Birmingham, Hodge Hill - Kieran Mullan (Labour majority 10302, Con in 3rd)
Birmingham, Ladywood - Isabel Sigmac (Labour majority 10105, Con in 3rd)
Birmingham, Northfield - Rachel Maclean (Labour majority 2782)
Birmingham, Perry Barr - Charlotte Hodivala (Labour majority 11908, Con in 3rd)
Birmingham, Selly Oak - Alex Boulter (Labour majority 3482)
Birmingham, Yardley - Arun Photay (Lib Dem majority 3002, Con in 3rd)
Blackburn - Bob Eastwood (Labour majority 9856)
Blackpool South - Peter Anthony (Labour majority 1852)
Bolsover - Peter Bedford (Labour majority 11182)
Bolton North East - James Daly (Labour majority 4084)
Bolton West - Christopher Green (Labour majority 92)
Boston & Skegness - Matt Warman (Conservative majority 12426)
Bradford South - Tanya Graham (Labour majority 4622)
Bradford West - George Grant (Labour majority 5763)
Brecon & Radnorshire - Chris Davies (Lib Dem majority 3747)
Bridgend - Meirion Jenkins (Labour majority 2263)
Brighton, Pavilion - Clarence Mitchell (Green majority 1252, Con in 3rd)
Bristol East - Theodora Clarke (Labour majority 3722)
Bristol South - Isobel Grant (Labour majority 4734, Con in 3rd)
Bristol West - Claire Hiscott (Lib Dem majority 11366, Con in 3rd)
Bury South - Daniel Critchlow (Labour majority 3292)
Bury St Edmunds - Johanna Churchill (Conservative majority 12380)
Camberwell & Peckham - Naomi Newstead (Labour majority 17187, Con in 3rd)
Cambridge - Chamali Fernando (Lib Dem majority 6792)
Cannock Chase - Amanda Milling (Conservative majority 3195)
Cardiff North - Craig Williams (Conservative majority 194)
Cardiff West - James Taghdissian (Labour majority 4751)
Carmarthen East & Dinefwr - Matthew Paul (Plaid majority 3481, Con in 3rd)
Carshalton & Wallington - Matthew Maxwell Scott (Lib Dem majority 5260)
Ceredigion - Henrietta Hensher (Lib Dem majority 8324, Con in 3rd)
Cheadle - Mary Robinson (Lib Dem majority 3272)
Cheltenham - Alex Chalk (Lib Dem majority 4920)
Chesterfield - Mark Vivis (Labour majority 549, Con in 3rd)
Chippenham - Michelle Donelan (Lib Dem majority 2470)
Chorley - Rob Loughenbury (Labour majority 2593)
City of Durham - Rebecca Coulson (Labour majority 3067, Con in 3rd)
Clacton - Giles Watling (Conservative majority 12068)
Clwyd South - David Nicholls (Labour majority 2834)
Colchester - Will Quince (Lib Dem majority 6982)
Corby - Tom Pursglove (Conservative majority 1895)
Coventry North East - Michelle Lowe (Labour majority 11775)
Coventry North West - Parvez Akhtar (Labour majority 6288)
Coventry South - Gary Ridley (Labour majority 3845)
Croydon North - Vidhi Mohan (Labour majority 16481)
Croydon South - Chris Philp (Conservative majority 15818)
Darlington - Peter Cuthbertson (Labour majority 3388)
Delyn - Mark Isherwood (Labour majority 2272)
Derby North - Amanda Solloway (Labour majority 613)
Derby South - Evonne Williams (Labour majority 6122)
Dudley North - Afzal Amin (Labour majority 649)
Dudley South - Mike Wood (Conservative majority 3856)
Dulwich & West Norwood - Resham Kotecha (Labour majority 9365, Con in 3rd)
Dumfries & Galloway - Finlay Carson (Labour majority 7449)
Dunfermline & West Fife - James Reekie (Labour majority 5470, Con in 4th)
Dwyfor Meirionnydd - Neil Fairlamb (Plaid majority 6367)
Ealing, Southall - James Symes (Labour majority 9291)
Easington - Chris Hampsheir (Labour majority 14982, Con in 3rd)
East Kilbride, Strathaven & Lesmahagow - Graham Simpson (Labour majority 14503, Con in 3rd)
East Lothian - David Roach (Labour majority 12258)
East Renfrewshire - David Montgomery (Labour majority 10420)
Eastbourne - Caroline Ansell (Lib Dem majority 3435)
Eastleigh - Mims Davies (Lib Dem majority 3864)
Edinburgh North & Leith - Iain McGill (Labour majority 1724, Con in 3rd)
Edinburgh South - Miles Briggs (Labour majority 316, Con in 3rd)
Edinburgh South West - Gordon Lindhurst (Labour majority 8447)
Edinburgh West - Lindsay Paterson (Lib Dem majority 3803, Con in 3rd)
Edmonton - Gonul Daniels (Labour majority 9613)
Ellesmere Port & Neston - Katherine Fletcher (Labour majority 4331)
Eltham - Spencer Drury (Labour majority 1663)
Erewash - Maggie Throup (Conservative majority 2501)
Exeter - Dominic Morris (Labour majority 2721)
Falkirk - Alison Harris (Labour majority 7843, Con in 3rd)
Feltham & Heston - Simon Nayyar (Labour majority 4658)
Gedling - Carolyn Abbott (Labour majority 1859)
Gordon - Colin Clark (Lib Dem majority 6748, Con in 4th)
Gower - Byron Davies (Labour majority 2683)
Great Grimsby - Marc Jones (Labour majority 714)
Greenwich & Woolwich - Matt Hartley (Labour majority 10153)
Hackney North & Stoke Newington - Amy Gray (Labour majority 14461, Con in 3rd)
Hackney South & Shoreditch - Jack Tinley (Labour majority 14288, Con in 3rd)
Halifax - Philip Allott (Labour majority 1472)
Hammersmith - Charlie Dewhirst (Labour majority 3549)
Hampstead & Kilburn - Simon Marcus (Labour majority 42)
Harrow West - Hannah David (Labour majority 3143)
Havant - Alan Mak (Conservative majority 12160)
Hayes & Harlington - Pearl Lewis (Labour majority 10824)
Hazel Grove - William Wragg (Lib Dem majority 6371)
Hertsmere - Oliver Dowden (Conservative majority 17605)
Heywood & Middleton - Iain Gartside (Labour majority 5971)
Holborn & St Pancras - Will Blair (Labour majority 9942, Con in 3rd)
Hornsey & Wood Green - Suhail Rahuja (Lib Dem majority 6875, Con in 3rd)
Hove - Graham Cox (Conservative majority 1868)
Huddersfield - Itrat Ali (Labour majority 4472)
Inverness, Nairn, Badenoch & Strathspey - Edward Mountain (Lib Dem majority 8765, Con in 4th)
Kingston & Surbiton - James Berry (Lib Dem majority 7560)
Kingston-upon-Hull East - Emma Ideson (Labour majority 8597, Con in 3rd)
Kingston-upon-Hull North - Dehenna Davison (Labour majority 641, Con in 3rd)
Kingston-upon-Hull West & Hessle - Mike Whitehead (Labour majority 5742, Con in 3rd)
Kirkcaldy & Cowdenbeath - Dave Dempsey (Labour majority 23009, Con in 4th)
Lanark & Hamilton East - Alex Allison (Labour majority 13478, Con in 3rd)
Lancashire West - Paul Greenall (Labour majority 4343)
Leicester East - Kishan Devani (Labour majority 14082)
Leicester South - Leon Hadjinikolaou (Labour majority 8808, Con in 3rd)
Leicester West - Paul Bessant (Labour majority 4017)
Lewes - Maria Caulfield (Lib Dem majority 7647)
Lewisham East - Peter Fortune (Labour majority 6216, Con in 3rd)
Lewisham West & Penge - Russell Jackson (Labour majority 5828, Con in 3rd)
Lewisham, Deptford - Bim Afolami (Labour majority 12499, Con in 3rd)
Leyton & Wanstead - Matthew Scott (Labour majority 6416, Con in 3rd)
Llanelli - Selaine Saxby (Labour majority 4701, Con in 3rd)
Louth & Horncastle - Victoria Atkins (Conservative majority 13871)
Luton North - Dean Russell (Labour majority 7520)
Luton South - Katie Redmond (Labour majority 2329)
Mid Dorset and North Poole - Michael Tomlinson (Lib Dem majority 269)
Mid Worcestershire - Nigel Huddleston (Conservative majority 15864)
Middlesbrough South & East Cleveland - Will Goodhand (Labour majority 1677)
Midlothian - Michelle Ballantyne (Labour majority 10349, Con in 4th)
Mitcham & Morden - Paul Holmes (Labour majority 13666)
Moray - Douglas Ross (SNP majority 5590)
Morley & Outwood - Andrea Jenkyns (Labour majority 1101)
Newcastle-under-Lyme - Tony Cox (Labour majority 1552)
Newport West - Nick Webb (Labour majority 3544)
North Cornwall - Scott Mann (Lib Dem majority 2981)
North Devon - Peter Heaton-Jones (Lib Dem majority 5821)
North Durham - Laetitia Glossop (Labour majority 12076)
North East Derbyshire - Lee Rowley (Labour majority 2445)
North East Fife - Huw Bell (Lib Dem majority 9048)
North East Hampshire - Ranil Jayawardena (Conservative majority 18597)
North Norfolk - Ann Steward (Lib Dem majority 11626)
North Warwickshire - Craig Tracey (Conservative majority 54)
North West Durham - Charlotte Haitham-Taylor (Labour majority 7612, Con in 3rd)
Northampton South - David Mackintosh (Conservative majority 6004)
Norwich South - Lisa Townsend (Lib Dem majority 310, Con in 3rd)
Nottingham East - Garry Hickton (Labour majority 6969, Con in 3rd)
Nottingham North - Louise Burfitt-Dons (Labour majority 8138)
Nottingham South - Jane Hunt (Labour majority 1772)
Plymouth Moor View - Johnny Mercer (Labour majority 1588)
Poplar & Limehouse - Chris Wilford (Labour majority 6030)
Portsmouth South - Flick Drummond (Lib Dem majority 5200)
Richmond (Yorks) - Rishi Sunak (Conservative majority 23336)
Rochester & Strood - Kelly Tolhurst (Conservative majority 9953)
Ross, Skye & Lochaber - Lindsay McCallum (Lib Dem majority 13070, Con in 4th)
Rother Valley - Gareth Streeter (Labour majority 5866)
Rotherham - Seb Lowe (Labour majority 10462)
Rutherglen & Hamilton West - Taylor Muir (Labour majority 21002, Con in 4th)
Sedgefield - Scott Wood (Labour majority 8696)
Sefton Central - Valerie Allen (Labour majority 3862)
Solihull - Julian Knight (Lib Dem majority 175)
Somerton & Frome - David Warburton (Lib Dem majority 1817)
South Cambridgeshire - Heidi Allen (Conservative majority 7838)
South East Cambridgeshire - Lucy Frazer (Conservative majority 5946)
South Leicestershire - Alberto Costa (Conservative majority 15524)
South Ribble - Seema Kennedy (Conservative majority 5554)
South Suffolk - James Cartlidge (Conservative majority 8689)
South Thanet - Craig Mackinlay (Conservative majority 7617)
Southampton, Itchen - Royston Smith (Labour majority 192)
Southampton, Test - Jeremy Moulton (Labour majority 2413)
Southport - Damien Moore (Lib Dem majority 6024)
St Austell & Newquay - Stephen Double (Lib Dem majority 1312)
St Ives - Derek Thomas (Lib Dem majority 1719)
Stoke-on-Trent Central - Liam Ascough (Labour majority 5566, Con in 3rd)
Stoke-on-Trent North - Ben Adams (Labour majority 8235)
Stoke-on-Trent South - Joe Rich (Labour majority 4130)
Streatham - Kim Caddy (Labour majority 3259, Con in 3rd)
Sutton & Cheam - Paul Scully (Lib Dem majority 1608)
Swansea West - Emma Lane (Labour majority 504, Con in 3rd)
Taunton Deane - Rebecca Pow (Lib Dem majority 3993)
Telford - Lucy Allan (Labour majority 978)
Thirsk & Malton - Kevin Hollinrake (Conservative majority 11281)
Thornbury & Yate - Luke Hall (Lib Dem majority 7116)
Tonbridge & Malling - Tom Tugendhat (Conservative majority 18178)
Tooting - Dan Watkins (Labour majority 2524)
Torbay - Kevin Foster (Lib Dem majority 4078)
Torfaen - Graham Smith (Labour majority 9306)
Tottenham - Stefan Mrozinski (Labour majority 16931, Con in 3rd)
Twickenham - Tania Mathias (Lib Dem majority 12140)
Tynemouth - Glenn Hall (Labour majority 5739)
Uxbridge & Ruislip South - Boris Johnson (Conservative majority 11216)
Vale of Clwyd - James Davies (Labour majority 2509)
Vauxhall - James Bellis (Labour majority 10651, Con in 3rd)
Walsall North - Douglas Hansen-Luke (Labour majority 990)
Walsall South - Sue Arnold (Labour majority 1755)
Walthamstow - Molly Samuel-Leport (Labour majority 9478, Con in 3rd)
Warley - Tom Williams (Labour majority 10756)
Warrington North - Richard Short (Labour majority 6771)
Wealden - Nusrat Ghani (Conservative majority 17179)
Wells - James Heappey (Lib Dem majority 800)
Wentworth & Dearne - Michael Naughton (Labour majority 13920)
West Bromwich East - Olivia Seccombe (Labour majority 6696)
West Ham - Festus Akinbusoye (Labour majority 22534)
Westminster North - Lindsey Hall (Labour majority 2126)
Westmorland & Lonsdale - Ann Myatt (Lib Dem majority 12264)
Wirral South - John Bell (Labour majority 531)
Wolverhampton South East - Suria Photay (Labour majority 6593)
Wrexham - Andrew Atkinson (Labour majority 3658, Con in 3rd)
Wythenshawe & Sale East - Fiona Green (Labour majority 7575)
Yeovil - Marcus Fysh (Lib Dem majority 13036)
Ynys Mon - Michelle Willis (Labour majority 2461, Con in 3rd)
York Central - Robert McIlveen (Labour majority 6451)

Comments - 457 Responses on “Conservative candidates”
  1. “Any idea when Sheffield Cons select? The Hallam candidature may be of some importance to the outcome.”

    I’ve been given a date in mid January for Sheffield Conservative selections. I don’t think that has been confirmed yet though. I will post more information when I have it.

  2. Alberto Costa selected as Cons cand for South Leicestershire.
    (MP Andrew Robathan Announced standing down 24/9/14. )

    http://www.leicestermercury.co.uk/Tories-choose-Alberto-Costa-stand-South/story-25282720-detail/story.html

  3. The Conservative candidates for the Rotherham constituencies will be selected on Saturday, 20 December.

    The Conservative candidates for the Sheffield constituencies (not including Penistone & Stocksbridge) will be selected on 17 January.

  4. I heard a Tory Cllr refer to their CSI as Corporate, Slow & Inept!

  5. Edward Yi He Cons cand. for Aberavon.

    Twitter :-
    SwanseaConservatives ‏@SwanseaTories Dec 16
    Congratulations to Edward Yi He who has been selected as the Welsh Conservative Candidate for Aberavon at new… http://fb.me/6wS6vCFBu

    BR

  6. East Ham Samir Jassal Cons PPC.

    Twitter :-
    Samir Jassal @samirjassal · 15h 15 hours ago
    Extremely honoured to have been selected as the Conservative Party Parliamentary Candidate for East Ham

  7. Thanks Blake, keep unearthing these obscure selections.

  8. DA – did they take place in Rotherham? Merseyside’s have been postponed again.

  9. Lancs Observer,

    Yes, the Conservative candidates in the Rotherham constituencies are:

    Rotherham – Seb Lowe
    Rother Valley – Gareth Streeter
    Wentworth and Dearne – Michael Naughton

  10. Seb Lowe is the chair of Vauxhall Conservatives. Streeter is a member of Croydon Conservatives and seems like a moderate. Michael Naughton was fifth on the Tory list for Yorkshire and the Humber in May – he’s from Rotherham and seems to have worked in politics for a long time.

    None of them particularly good but I suppose that’s what the CSI is for. Reckon Nicola Bates might be going for Hallam again? She did fairly well last time.

  11. MrNameLess,

    I don’t know who, or even how many people, are on the short list to be Conservative candidates for the Sheffield seats.

    When I last spoke to Nicola Bates about this, about 3 months ago, she said she wasn’t planning on standing at the general election as she is busy with other things.

  12. Streeter is son of Gary Streeter MP. He stood in Ashburton ward in Croydon in 2014 and lost a safe Conservative seat to Labour. He also stood for the Conservatives in Lambeth in 2006.

  13. Simon Wilson was selected as the PPC for the Conservatives in the Leeds North East constituency in around October 2014.

  14. Interesting one.
    Neil Wilson to be Cons cand for Belfast East. He will up against Alliance incumbent Naomi Long,

    Alan Greer was Cons cand. for Belfast East in 2005. None in 2010 (Tory UUP pact – disolved after 2010).

    See :-
    http://www.newsletter.co.uk/news/regional/tories-choose-east-belfast-candidate-1-6505776

    BR

  15. Emma Ideson PPC has withdrawn from being cand. for Hull East.

    Link here :-
    http://www.hulldailymail.co.uk/Hull-East-Conservative-candidate-Emma-Ideson/story-25843817-detail/story.html

    BR

  16. 3 Constituencies have NEITHER Cons NOR Lab candidates yet :-

    Banff and Buchan (SNP incumbent)
    Beaconsfield (Con incumbent)
    Orkney and Shetland (SNP incumbent)

    BR

  17. Sorry! Lib Dem is incumbent at Orkney and Shetland !!

    (That’ll teach me to look at my colour scheme more closely before posting. AArrggh!)

    BR

  18. About as likely as UKIP winning East Ham

  19. JP Floru is Cons Candidate for Bermondsey and Old Southwark,

    JP Floru retweeted
    Bermondsey Tories @BOS_CA · Jan 10
    Congratulations to our selected parliamentary candidate @jpfloru!
    Embedded image permalink

    https://twitter.com/jpfloru

    BR

  20. Sheffield Conservative selections

    Hallam – Ian Walker – http://www.iangwalker.co.uk/
    Heeley – Stephen John Castens
    South East – Matt Sleat

  21. Are these selections on the Sheffield Conservatives website?

  22. Andy JS,

    No, the selections only happened this afternoon and I don’t think there has been an official announcement yet.

  23. Having said that, Ian Walker has announced his candidacy.
    https://twitter.com/IGWalker/status/556499731569205248

  24. It really is inept that the Tories are only just selecting PPCs in seats such as Hallam, Hyndburn etc as they also did in 2010. Little over 10 weeks with the Easter hols etc for a Candidate. Even in the Locals they seem to be getting later and later at selecting. Is there a reason for this?

  25. How many of the 631 Conservative candidates have been selected?

  26. Not many care to mention it but UKIP must have made chaos in more than a few Tory branches with defections.. I had heard that almost everyone had to be brought in to the Rochester & Strood fight because virtually all the branch had gone.. this must have been repeated in a more sotto voce way in many other branches.. hence the slowness in selections

  27. The Conservatives have selected 515 candidates so far:

    http://www.bitly.com/Xb3122

  28. Thanks Andy. I thought they were still below 500, but they appear to have selected 30 just last Saturday.

  29. Cons Candidate for Preston

    Twitter : –
    PrestonConservatives ‏@PrestonCons

    Jan 20
    Richard Holden has been selected as the Conservative Parliamentary Candidate for Preston.

    Preston conservative twitter here :-

    https://twitter.com/PrestonCons

    BR

  30. Looking across the regions Conservatives have yet to select in :-

    Scot ____ 25 out of 59 (42%)
    NE ______ 8 out of 29 (27%)
    Yrk/Hum _ 13 out of 54 (24%)
    NW _____ 17 out of 75 (22%)

    A total of 80 (13%) seats across all seats excluding NI. And, yes, there are some cons cands for NI this time around.

    A high % for Scotland – perhaps a blow back from the Independence upheaval (see MDF comment above). I can see that NE would have a number of ‘paper’ cands. being a Labour stronghold. A bit surprised by York & Hum having a highish %

    Candidates still to be selected for current MPs includes Charnwood (Stephen Dorrell), North Dorset (Bob Walter) & Faversham and Mid Kent (Hugh Robertson).

    BR

  31. Which cities do that Conservative initiative list thing where say 5 people are selected collectively for say the 5 constituencies covering Liverpool and Halewood and then allocated seats at a later stage?

    Also, in 2005 Jason Steen was then allocated Liverpool Wavertree. Was he related to Anthony Steen, Wavertree’s last Tory MP?

  32. Bob Walter is retiring.

  33. @Dalek:
    Full list given here (80 seats in total)
    http://www.conservativehome.com/parliament/2014/07/80-city-seats-initiative-constituencies-open-for-candidate-applications.html

    Roughly conurbations in :- NW, NE, WM, Yorks & Hum regions.

    Don’t know answer to Steen query.

    BR

  34. Wallasey – Conservative
    Chris Clarkson

  35. Barnsley Central: Jackie Cracknell.
    Barnsley East: Katharine Harbone.
    Penistone & Stocksbridge: Steven Jackson.

  36. I remember Harborne well – she’s one of 2 former councillors for my ward (N Richmond) who are now standing in the general election. She beat the LDs in the 2010 local elections but then moved to Oxford where she was predictably easily beaten in last year’s local elections. I don’t think she has any connections with E Barnsley.

  37. If there’s one thing the Conservatives should stop doing immediately, it is the widespread practice of standing posh chinless wonders from Kensington & Chelsea in safe Labour seats in the north. FFS, do they not wonder why they have such an image problem in such areas? It is completely unnecessary. Whatever you say about Labour, they generally do not do this in their weaker seats (their candidates in Surrey are generally not steelworkers from Sheffield).

  38. She is rather posh as it happens. One of the other sitting Tory councillors who was also elected in 2010 is much less so.

  39. Hemmelig, I doubt it makes the slightest bit of difference. The number of people in safe Labour seats in the north who know the background of their local paper Tory candidate must be minute. It’s a different matter if an election address is distributed, but in those kind of seats that mostly won’t happen.

    I don’t doubt that the party has the kind of image problem you describe, but thats down to the image it projects on a national level.

  40. “It’s a different matter if an election address is distributed, but in those kind of seats that mostly won’t happen.”

    Really? Certainly the Tories always distributed an election address in Ashfield when I lived there, though I haven’t been there at election time since 1997 so don’t know if they still do. Do they not do so in Chesterfield.

    The reason it “doesn’t make the slightest bit of difference” is given away by your post….writing them off as paper candidates, not even bothering to send out an election address or appear in front of the voters on the doorstep or on the streets. However can the Tory party do anything other than shrink if it has that kind of attitude? Surely it has some long term potential with the WWC demographic living in the likes of Barnsley and Bolsover, potential now being hoovered up by UKIP.

  41. Hemmelig, I doubt it makes the slightest bit of difference. T

    I am with HH on this, as on a number of issues….the problem with not having local candidates is that it becomes impossible to build on any kind of support.

    The tory candidate for northern/scottish/welsh “no hoper” seat, jeremy bufton-tufton, is selected 3 months before the election. “Fights” the seat. then b*ggers off. In the meantime nothing happens, and then the cycle is repeated in four/five years’ time.

    The lib dems by contrast would have workers who beavered away and then won seats, sometimes in the most improbable of places.

    The tory party shrinks by writing off seats, it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. I think the tories could have been more competitive in the north and, possibly scotland, if they hadn’t had this approach. I like Jacob Rees- Mogg but why he fought that seat in fife or wherever it was I don’t know. It should never have been allowed to happen. I think the Scottish Tories are wise to this now and, from what i see, choose more local candidates.

  42. Though it has always happened to a certain extent, I think it is far more widespread now than 20-30 years ago.

    Returning to Ashfield, the Tories got a respectable vote in 1992 and 1997 when they put up credible candidates who were not Bufton-Tuftons…indeed both are now MPs (Laurence Robertson & Mark Simmonds). After 2001, posh London SPAD types fought the seat and helped collapse the Tory vote and turn the seat into a Labour-Lib Dem marginal.

  43. And to think the Tories at one time actually HELD Ashfield for a couple of years after a by-election in 1977 which saw Tim Smith first enter Parliament.

  44. The Liberal candidate in Ashfield during the 80s was Frances Stein, who held up her party’s vote very well. It was only in 1992 that the Lib Dems collapsed here and Labour recovered properly after most of the mines had long been hit hard.

  45. As everyone knows, there’s a bias within the Tory Party from the top to bottom towards people with wealth – an assumption that affluent people automatocally make better candidates

    It’s not just Cameron and his elitist band who take this view – but local associations too

    It’s something don’t really encounter this within the other parties, and yet again underlibes trhgis percepotion – which Cameron refuses to even deny – that the Tory Party is only concerned with the welfare of the rich

  46. Agreed Tim. Andrew Rosindell in Romford has at least proved that even if you’re the complete opposite to what most people expect the run-of-the-mill Tory, you can still thrive in the right area.

  47. ‘Andrew Rosindell in Romford has at least proved that even if you’re the complete opposite to what most people expect the run-of-the-mill Tory, you can still thrive in the right area.’

    I don’t think any Tory has done as well as Rosindell in reviving Tory support in their patch

    Another who stands out of course is Thatcher herself – from a very ordinary background – and John Mahor – although he was obviously less successful in office – and yet this presumption that rich = better still prevails wuthin Tory circles

    Until they choose to address it, it will be an issue that continues to dog then and will naturally limit their support

  48. Grant Shapps has also done very well in Welwyn Hatfield- I believe it was said he picked up some of Simon Hughes’ campaigning methods when he stood against him in North Southwark and Bermondsey in 1997.

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