Tories reveal Suffolk Coastal candidate
A BBC property finance manager has achieved an almost unheard of first round victory to become the Conservative candidate in Suffolk Coastal to succeed MP John Gummer.
A BBC property finance manager achieved an almost unheard of first round victory to become the Conservative candidate in Suffolk Coastal to succeed MP John Gummer.
Therese Coffey beat five other candidates to win the nomination on Saturday afternoon and immediately pledged to move into the constituency, which includes Felixstowe, Woodbridge, Aldeburgh, Halesworth and Southwold.
If she wins - at the last election Mr Gummer had a majority of more than 9,000 - she will be the first woman in electoral history to become an MP in Suffolk.
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She said after her overwhelming victory: “I am thrilled to have been chosen by the great people of Suffolk Coastal Conservatives. There are many issues to tackle here and I have a lot to learn from John Gummer but the critical thing is to win the general election three months' today.
“Tonight I'll be celebrating but tomorrow I'll be starting work for the people of Suffolk Coastal - and I will be moving into the constituency by Valentine's Day."
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She added: “I am not a Westminster insider. I have had a real life in business and I will use my experience on behalf of the people of Suffolk Coastal.”
She was born in Wigan and at one time was finance director of Mars Drinks before joining the BBC. She is a member of the Countryside Alliance, plays tennis and goes horseracing, and is a supporter of the charity Water Aid.
The five candidates she defeated were: Hugo de Burgh, a journalism and China studies professor at the University of Westminster who lives in Woodbridge corporate lawyer Sophie Stanbrook who lives in Suffolk, Norfolk farmer Kay Mason, Lincolnshire headteacher Tim Clark, and Nadhim Zahawi one of the founders of the YouGov polling organiser