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Tory candidate for Grantham MP chosen by local members

The Conservative candidate who will stand for MP at the next general election has been chosen by constituency Conservatives.

Gareth Davies is a 35-year-old newly-wed asset manager from Yorkshire.

On Wednesday night, he beat three other finalists in the candidate selection, including a Grantham-born candidate, before returning to his honeymoon with new wife Laura.

Philip Sagar, Laura and Gareth Davies and Martin Trollope-Bellew (14609164)
Philip Sagar, Laura and Gareth Davies and Martin Trollope-Bellew (14609164)

Mr Davies was said by party officials to be “head and shoulders above the rest” with him gaining the support of more than half the members present in the first round.

The prospective MP supports a ‘no deal’ Brexit and in hustings at The Meres Leisure Centre said this had to be delivered on October 31, and the country can “only come back together once we leave the EU”.

Members also heard his support for an upgraded A1, which he pledged to campaign for.

Mr Davies is state-school educated, and a self-made businessman, who grew up in Leeds and rural North Yorkshire.

He is an expert in pensions, with an emphasis on ethical investment, using capital to promote social good and for investment to tackle climate change.

The candidate has stood twice for Parliament before, in Leeds Central and Doncaster, gaining good swings in his favour. He has also been appointed to the Conservative’s Economic Policy Task Force, has attended Harvard University’s JFK School of Government and worked for the administration of former US president Barack Obama.

Grantham and Stamford Conservative Association vice president Philip Sagar vice-president called Mr Davies “a bright lad” saying what swung it for him, was his good ideas to make the Tories appeal to young voters.

He said: “He will be able to connect with people and debate with the opposition.

“He answered questions in detail. He’s head and shoulders above the rest.”

Association treasurer Adam Stokes said: “Gareth will be a fantastic candidate and will be a fantastic constituency MP that will provide us with a strong voice in parliament. He’s very approachable and personable.”

Chairman of Grantham East Conservatives Ray Wootten said : “Gareth is very competent, enthusiastic and will do a great job. He was energetic, professional and very smart.”

Secretary of Grantham East Conservatives Linda Wootten said: “He came across extremely well. He looked the part and gave an excellent presentation. He’s fully switched on, he’s fresh and believable. He will be a brilliant MP.”

Mr Davies was unavailable for comment today as he was flying back to his honeymoon from East Midlands Airport. But after his selection, he tweeted: “Humbled and excited to become the Conservative Parliamentary Candidate for Grantham and Stamford tonight. Thank you to all who voted for me.”

In the final four, he defeated Tim Clark, a former Spalding headmaster, now living in London, Ben Everitt, a Grantham-born ‘strategist’ now living in Buckinghamshire, and Julie Marson, a wife and mum from Essex.

At the last election in 2017, the now Independent MP Nick Boles won the seat with a 20,000-plus majority, when he was previously a Conservative.

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