Northumberland Tory parliamentary candidate orders removal of her "MP" Twitter account

Tory supporters in Twitter blunder after Berwick MP's decision to retire

Conservative candidate Anne Marie-Trevelyan's chances of taking the Berwick seat at the next election have been boosted by Sir Alan Beith's decision to retire - but it is not a done deal
Conservative candidate Anne Marie-Trevelyan's chances of taking the Berwick seat at the next election have been boosted by Sir Alan Beith's decision to retire - but it is not a done deal

A Conservative candidate in Northumberland ordered the removal of a Twitter account which referred to her as an MP.

Anne Marie-Trevelyan, who will look to take control of the Berwick seat at the next general election, said she had acted as soon as she was informed of the account in her name under the title AnnieTrevMP.

Mrs Trevelyan said the page – set up just hours after sitting MP Sir Alan Beith announced he would be retiring at the next election – had been the work of “exuberant” young supporters.

The account had sparked debate on Twitter with users – including Gateshead MP Ian Mearns – questioning whether it had been set up by Mrs Trevelyan.

The page, which carries the candidate’s name, her photograph and website address, began tweeting on July 18. On August 2, it featured one tweet identical to a posting on Mrs Trevelyan’s account AnnieTrev.

Mr Mearns tweeted: “Is it a real account or someone else making it up? If true a tad presumptuous?”

Users then reported the removal of the page on Wednesday. When contacted by The Journal yesterday, Mrs Trevelyan said she been unaware of the account until she was alerted to it by email on Wednesday.

She then discovered the page had been set up by a band of her “exuberant” young supporters, “messing about on the internet” out of “youthful enthusiasm”.

Mrs Trevelyan said she had instructed the creators to remove the account immediately. She added it had not been “helpful”.

Mrs Trevelyan said it had been “a little bit premature” to refer to her as an MP but added: “I would like to say that one day I will be able to have a Twitter account like that.”

Meanwhile, the Liberal Democrats in Berwick are beginning the process of finding a replacement for Sir Alan, who announced on Wednesday that he will not be seeking re-election in 2015.

Sir Alan had a majority of 2,690 at the last election, with a number of those likely to have been personal votes built up during his 42 years as the constituency’s MP.

Returning officer Doreen Huddart revealed the party hopes to name Sir Alan’s replacement within “a couple of months”.

The process will see an advert placed in party publications, followed by consideration of applicants and interviews by a selection panel.

A shortlist will then be produced by the panel ahead of a ballot during a meeting where all paid-up party members can vote.

Mrs Huddart said the process normally lasts eight to 15 weeks. He said: “Because it will be a seat of significant interest it may take the 15 weeks. There is an incumbent, that always adds interest to it.”

 

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