Sunday, January 10, 2010

John Maples to Retire

The Times is reporting that John Maples, the Conservative Party Deputy Chairman in charge of candidates is to stand down from the House of Commons. He has represented Stratford on Avon since 1997 and was a Minister in the Thatcher government. He was first elected to the Commons in 1983 in Lewisham West but lost his seat in 1992.

Because he has announced the decision after January 1st, the new selection procedure will be invoked.


Anonymous said...

A nation mourns.

Next up:

"Arise Lord Maples of Duntroughin" for providing a safe berth to parachute in a favoured wannabe MP.


Victor, NW Kent said...

I am delighted that John Maples is to retire.

Sinbad the sailor said...

Nothing personal against the guy..but according to the press he sold his 2nd home last year which had been financed by the tax payer and made an estimated profit of a million quid which of course he gets to keep.

A nice comfortable retirement approaches.

A nice job for whoever takes over as its one of those seats where a blue rosette attached to a donkeys backside would win!

Andy JS said...

Watch John Maples lose his seat in 1992, 1 minute into this video:

Jimmy said...

"A nice job for whoever takes over as its one of those seats where a blue rosette attached to a donkeys backside would win!"

IIRC the only Tory gain in 97.

Anonymous said...

Hmmm... Iain Dale, MP for Stratford Upon Avon...sounds perfect!

WPATW said...

As a Stratford resident, I have not been particularly impressed with him - another complacent high majority owner - so good news then.

The way Lib Dem are gaining Council seats, it needs someone who is not going to be invisible, and turn up once in a while and do something

So when can we expect you as a new neighbour then Iain?

Damon From Birmingham said...

Jimmy may be correct on it being a Conservative gain in 1997, but that was only because Alan Howarth, the previous MP had defected from the Conservatives to Labour.

Alan Howarth (when he was a Conservative!) was the first MP I ever voted for as the 1987 election was a couple of weeks after my 18th birthday.

Simon Smethurst-McIntyre said...

I'm a stratford resident and member of the local association and I think his behaviour has been disgraceful.

As WPATW says the lib dems are winning council seats hand over fist here at the moment and there's a danger that if we don't get a strong showing in the polls this election that we'll become a target seat for them next. Although John Maples hasn't been great he is at least a known name in the local area as opposed to someone with no local roots parachuted in under the "by-election" rules.

See my blog at A Stratford Conservative for more.

Bill said...

For John Maples replacement to retain the seat with the same majority, maybe he needs to meet the Fire Station Support Groups, and give them his/her unconditional support. Feelings about Tory plans to shut 7 fire stations in the County could just make the prospective candidates majority go up in smoke before his very eyes! LibDems are kicking Conservative backsides locally against national trend, and the local Libdem candidate is already on the battleground making friends.

Simon Smethurst-McIntyre said...

Bill that may be the case but nationally Lib Dems are supporting the Labour Government's usage of the equality bill to redraw fire coverage and fire station locations on the basis of addressing social inequality. This means that fire resources will be directed away from richer areas such as Stratford, and the surrounding well to do villages in Warwickshire towards poorer urban areas.

Specifically Whitehall instructions call for priority to be based on "socio-economic and geo-demographic data" which can be used to justify "reducing fire cover locally". Fire resources are to be focused on "private renters", "local authority and housing association" properties, "single parent families" and "drug abusers" as opposed to owner occupiers.

Nationally the Lib Dems have lobbied for various fire services to be included in this law which woudn't have otherwise. In fact speaking on this Lynne Featherstone, Lib Dem MP said during the Equality Bill Committee "Social inequality in the question of where and how to give fire cover is very important. The authorities cover huge areas – West Midlands fire service, for example”

I therefore think it must be pretty difficult for the Lib Dem candidate to be making friends locally and keeping their friends nationally at the same time.