September 20 2014 Latest news:

Local Weather

Rain

Rain

max temp: 19°C

min temp: 13°C

Five-day forecast

The real reason Hampstead receives so many visits from Tory ministers

Andrew Mitchell MP with hostess Fiorella Massey and parliamentary candidate Simon Marcus. Picture: Nigel Sutton Andrew Mitchell MP with hostess Fiorella Massey and parliamentary candidate Simon Marcus. Picture: Nigel Sutton

Friday, July 25, 2014
1:00 PM

Take a stroll through Hampstead these past few weeks and you’d be forgiven for thinking the village had become a “Bohemian Grove” retreat for the Tory cabinet.

To send a link to this page to a friend, you must be logged in.

Jeremy Hunt tours the Institute of Immunology and Transplantation at the Royal Free. Pictured with Chris Burghes (chief executive of the Royal Free Charity), Prof Hans Stauss (head of the institute) and Cllr Simon Marcus. Picture: David BishopJeremy Hunt tours the Institute of Immunology and Transplantation at the Royal Free. Pictured with Chris Burghes (chief executive of the Royal Free Charity), Prof Hans Stauss (head of the institute) and Cllr Simon Marcus. Picture: David Bishop

The Ham&High can’t seem to go a week without being told there’s another Conservative “big-hitter” winging his way to the area in support of Tory parliamentary candidate for Hampstead and Kilburn, Cllr Simon Marcus.

With an astonishing five Tory grandees coming in the past month alone, the area has become awash with David Cameron’s “middle-aged white men”.

It began when (now former) education secretary Michael Gove joined Cllr Marcus on a visit to St Luke’s School in Kidderpore Avenue on July 4.

Just days later, chancellor George Osborne walked the streets of Kilburn (again with Cllr Marcus) and on July 10 the soon-to-be-sacked environment secretary Owen Paterson was touring Hampstead Heath’s ponds (Cllr Marcus in hand).

Soon followed a visit by “Plebgate” MP Andrew Mitchell and last Thursday health secretary Jeremy Hunt toured the Royal Free Hospital with Cllr Marcus.

With many MPs across the country struggling to attract even one high-profile politician to support their campaigns, the Ham&High asked Cllr Marcus why he has such overwhelming attention?

“I’m fighting the most marginal seat in the country, so the party has been committed to giving me all the support they can,” he said.

“They also see I’m a hard-working candidate, so ministers want to take time to come and see me.”

The seat is a key target for the Tories. But the Ham&High understands this is not the whole story.

Sources have revealed Conservative Campaign Headquarters is awash with quotas dictating the hours ministers must spend visiting constituencies in support of local candidates, which means choosing Hampstead has apparently become a “no-brainer”.

“Ministers love visiting Hampstead because it’s just 20 minutes away from their offices in Westminster,” the source revealed.

“They can fulfil their quota and be back in time for lunch. Given a choice between a long car trip to somewhere in the north or leafy Hampstead, it’s a no-brainer.”

Share this article

0 comments

Comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Hampstead and Highgate Express visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Hampstead and Highgate Express staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Forgotten your password?

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Hampstead and Highgate Express account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

   Local advertisers

More news

Click here to read the Digital Edition of the Ham&High on screen
Use our Wedding site to help you plan your big day!
At WeddingSite we know how much you have to organise for your wedding day, that's why we have designed a set of FREE, simple-to-use tools to make the planning process easy & hassle-free. FIND OUT MORE
Find a date using our online dating and friend finder
You can meet new friends, find romance or simply meet up online with people sharing similar interests and hobbies. FIND OUT MORE
Find a local business using our online directory search
Need a plumber? Or a florist? Or anything else? Search our business directory to find Hampstead businesses in just a few seconds. FIND OUT MORE
Family notices from the Ham&High, with readers' tributes
In memoriam, birthdays, weddings, anniversaries, best wishes & special days. FIND OUT MORE