Congratulations to Martin Tod in Winchester, former marketing guru for Vodafone, now Internet Campaigns consultant for the Liberal Democrats. He has a tough sell on his hands, but if anyone can do it, he can.
Local Councillor David Spender has blogged the result. Martin saw off Sarah Carr, Sue Farrant, Gary Lawson and Justine McGuinness to secure the selection.
Update: True to form, Martin Tod is off to a flying start with the launch of www.winningwinchester.com!
Also congratulations to Cllr Rosie Sharpley, selected as the PPC for Woking. Rosie has been a Woking councillor for 18 years and is currently a member of the Lib Dem exec running Woking Borough Council.
Welcoming the announcement, Chris Rennard, Chief Executive of the Liberal Democrats said:
“I am delighted that Martin Tod has been chosen. Martin is a superb choice and will be a very strong local champion for all the communities that will comprise the new Winchester constituency.
“The new seat will again be a battle between the Lib Dems and the Conservatives, with Labour out of the running. With this choice, we are confident that we can win the new seat.”
Martin Tod, the new Winchester parliamentary candidate, said:
“My first priority is to listen to local people and work with Mark Oaten, Sandra Gidley and the local Lib Dem team to stand up for local people on the City Council, County Council and in Parliament.
“An immediate concern is local hospital services. It’s essential that they are protected.
“We also need to hold the Conservatives to account. It’s appalling that failings in Conservative-run Social Services on the County Council contributed to the County Hospital missing the national target on ‘delayed transfers of care’.
“I’ve already been working with Winchester Liberal Democrats on the ‘Trip to the Shops’ campaign to improve the quality of Winchester’s streets. We will also be campaigning for fairer and greener taxes, to scrap tuition fees, increase the number of 20mph zones and to abolish the unfair council tax.”
Retiring Chair of Winchester Liberal Democrats, Harvey Cole said:
“The members of Winchester Lib Dems look forward to working with Martin Tod. He has emerged from what has proved to be a very strong competition and we are excited at the prospect of working with him.”
Mark Oaten has held the seat since 1997 and the Liberal Democrats have also been successful in a number of recent council by-elections.