Overcast

Overcast

max temp: 14°C

min temp: 10°C

Search

Suffolk: Grassroots Conservatives set to discuss future of MP Ruffley

15:50 26 June 2014

David Ruffley

David Ruffley

Archant

Senior members of the Bury St Edmunds’ Conservative Association are expected to hold meetings over the next few weeks about reports that MP David Ruffley has been given a police caution for common assault.

shares

It emerged last weekend that Mr Ruffley had received the caution from the Metropolitan Police in March following an incident allegedly involving his then partner Wendy Drew at a London flat.

Earlier this week the chairman of the Bury St Edmunds Conservative Association, Andrew Speed, said it would not be taking any action after reports about the incident emerged. He said: “We are sure it has been a very difficult time for both of them.

“But the incident in March was dealt with by the police at the time and no further action was required.”

His statement has led to concern among senior party members who feel that it gives the wrong signal.

Simple cautions cannot be offered to an offender who has not admitted that they are guilty of the offence or who has raised a defence, and cannot be given to an offender who does not agree to accept the caution.

They were also concerned that they did not know about the incident on March 15 until details emerged last weekend – pointing out that the incident happened at the same time as Mr Ruffley was being formally re-adopted to fight the seat at next year’s general election.

They are now preparing to call an extraordinary general meeting to discuss the issue with Mr Ruffley.

One member said: “At the very least he needs to give us a full explanation and apologise.” Another said it was a “very difficult situation” and that the incident needed to be taken “very seriously”.

The concern within the Conservative Party emerged after Lighthouse Women’s Aid and the Fawcett Society both called on the MP to stand down, as reported in the East Anglian Daily Times yesterday.

The Conservative Party does have a mechanism to re-open a selection contest if a local association is petitioned by a significant number of members.

There is no suggestion that such a move is imminent, but senior party members are keen for the issue to be discussed – and with a general election due in less than 11 months they are keen to get the matter resolved.

shares

3 comments

  • One wonders exactly what Tories consider serious enough to bring into question whether someone is fit to be a Member of Parliament? Assaulting a woman is obviously not on the list.

    Report this comment

    skrich

    Sunday, June 29, 2014

  • Tories definitely not up to Speed. Are they nasty or stupid or both?

    Report this comment

    Blackeye

    Friday, June 27, 2014

  • Ruffley by name !, 'Ruffley by nature' !, typical tory setting the 'Standards and Values' by example !

    Report this comment

    freedomf

    Thursday, June 26, 2014

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

The female driver of the car was not injured but shaken.

A lorry reportedly failed to stop after colliding with a car on the A14 near the Wherstead turnoff.

From left to right: Moira Ely, Leah Fuller and Colin Ely presenting the cheque for £2,000 to St Elizabeth Hospice after Colin's bungee jump in July

An Ipswich landlady has vowed to follow in the footsteps of her extraordinary dad – and tackle a charity bungee jump for St Elizabeth Hospice.

Spooky costumes on the beach at Felixstowe to launch the Halloween walk for EACH

A charity walk will light up Felixstowe’s promenade with its Halloween theme when it takes place next month.

Police are appealing for witnesses after the burglary of the social club of a business premises in Ipswich.

Allison Heathcote and son James Heathcote at Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Birmingham, where she was treated after being shot five times in the Tunisia terror attacks.

A Felixstowe woman who was fighting for her life after the Tunisia beach attack in which her husband was killed has said she can only “vaguely recall” the massacre.

Andrew Renton takes his first public walk at a neuro conference with the help of Headway Physiotherapist Karen Hardy, left, and Acquired Brain Injury Support Worker Chloe Witton, right.

For most of us walking is a luxury too easily taken for granted.

Cars for sale at the roadside

Trading Standards experts have revealed the top 10 most frequent consumer complaints.

Mars

A physicist who worked on a high-resolution camera that sent images back from Mars has turned his hand to writing.

Fire crews were called to Fraser House in Museum Street, Ipswich after a suspected gas leak was reported

A road in Ipswich has been reopened after a suspected gas leak forced the evacuation of a three storey building this morning.

Should Britain do more?

The public reaction to Europe’s migration crisis has been deeply polarised, but should Britain do more to offer homes to Syrian refugees affected by civil war?

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages