UKIP expecting top candidate for SE Cambs seat as chairman reveals he tried to bag party big gun Patrick O’Flynn to stand

16:25 18 August 2014

UKIP leader Nigel Farage.

UKIP leader Nigel Farage.

Archant

UKIP expects to field a “high calibre” candidate for the South East Cambridgeshire seat in next year’s General Election.

Chairman of the SE Cambs branch, Martin Hale, has labelled the Conservative-held seat as “very winnable” and says he expects the party to put forward a top-quality candidate.

But party big-wigs Nigel Farage and Patrick O’Flynn will definitely not be standing as they have already declared themselves interested in seats in Thanet South and Cambridge respectively.

Mr Hale said: “The South East Cambs seat was advertised by UKIP this week and anybody who has been assessed by the party and approved will be able to put their name forward.

“I can’t tell you anything about the individual candidates yet because some are still being assessed but I do know that it will be someone of high calibre. I will get a list of names about two weeks before the selection meeting.

“I really wanted to try and get Patrick for South East Cambs because I think it is a very winnable seat but on the day before the cut-off point for the Cambridge seat I got an e-mail of the candidates and his name was on it.

“We have since met up and he certainly seems to mean business.”

The selection meeting for the SE Cambs seat will take place on November 28 at Willingham Social Club, from 7.30pm.

Candidates will each deliver a speech to the audience before a secret ballot is held and a winner announced.

The Conservatives have already announced barrister Lucy Frazer as their candidate to fight next year’s election while Labour have put forward Huw Jones.

The Liberal Democrats will again be putting forward Cllr Jonathan Chatfield to stand for the seat, having contested both the 2010 and 2005 elections.

Sir Jim Paice will not be standing for re-election again at next year’s election, having served as SE Cambs MP since 1987.

DO YOU THINK UKIP WILL MAKE GROUND IN SE CAMBS? WOULD AN OPEN PRIMARY SWAY YOUR DECISION? E-mail daniel.mansfield@archant.co.uk or call 01353 665521.

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