NORTH Tories are switching to a rarely-seen primary selection process to choose their next Parliamentary candidate.
Berwick Conservatives will offer the public the chance to vote for their candidate to contest the seat held by Lib Dem Sir Alan Beith at the next General Election. A special Open primary meeting unprecedented in North East politics will be held at Northumberland Hall in Alnwick on February 8.
John Rae, chairman of the Berwick-upon-Tweed Conservative Association, said: “Our decision to open up this process to everyone registered to vote in our constituency is about bringing people into the political process and giving them more of a say in who their MP is.”
At the May 2010 election, Conservative candidate Anne-Marie Trevelyan came within 2,690 votes of the long-standing Sir Alan Beith. The result represented an 8.9% swing from Lib Dem to Conservative on a 68.1% turn-out.
Mr Rae added: “After strong Conservative progress, Berwick-upon-Tweed is now a key marginal seat.
“There is a strong chance that our next MP will be a Conservative, so it is important that a broad range of residents have a say in who their Conservative candidate is.”
Registered Berwick constituency voters can register to attend the Open Primary at 7pm on February 8 by telephoning 01665 602106.
Anybody interested can also email: firstname.lastname@example.org