Richard has had a great political career but above all should be recognised as an outstanding constituency MP, representing Bury St Edmunds since 1992 and West Suffolk since 1997. During the life of the present Labour administration he grew the Conservative share of the vote to a staggering 49%, a clear 20% above the second place Labour candidate. He has achieved this through hard work and commitment to the issues that his constituency considers important.
The process for selecting his successor is now under way. Applications closed on the 14th December and the constituency selection committee is in the process of sifting these applications to prepare a shortlist for interview. The final selection will be in the form of an open primary in January, much the same as the selection earlier in the month of Nick Hillman, the PPC for the neighbouring constituency of Cambridge.
As a “safe” seat there is bound to be a lot of interest from prospective parliamentary candidates from across the country, but surely the best interests of the constituency will continue to be served by a local candidate with in-depth knowledge and experience of the issues that confront a mixed constituency such as this.
The best way to participate in this important decision is of course to register to vote in the open primary when it take place. Registration is not yet open, however you can track the selection when it happens on the West Suffolk Conservatives website.