UKIP selects candidate for Suffolk Coastal seat
The UK Independence Party’s choice of candidate for Suffolk Coastal has taken up housing as a key campaign issue, accusing planners of “spouting nonsense” over the required level of development in the district.
Daryll Pitcher promised to put pressure on the Government to recalculate the number of homes needed in the area and compel the local council to cut its target of 7,900 new builds by 2027.
Mr Pitcher has been lauded as one of the architects of UKIP’s recent by-election victories for Douglas Carswell, in Clacton, and Mark Reckless, in Rochester and Strood.
Following Mr Pitcher’s selection as candidate at hustings held in Woodbridge, the party’s local chairman said the 38-year-old had a strong chance of “grabbing” the perennially-held Conservative seat in next May’s election.
Keith Phair added: “We’ve already seen the massive level of support for UKIP in this region with Douglas Carswell’s victory in Clacton and strong polling results across a wide range of Tory and Labour seats up and down the east coast. Winning a second Parliamentary seat in Rochester and Strood was another great win.
“Voters have been deprived of a voice on the crucial issues that affect them for far too long. UKIP aims to give them back their voice. We want people to vote positively and to help UKIP bring the change that the country needs.”
Firebrand party leader Nigel Farage said the University of Portsmouth politics graduate was “just the man” to represent the constituency in Parliament. He added: “Daryll Pitcher is a great candidate and will provide Suffolk Coastal with the representation it so sorely needs.
“People need energetic representation from MPs who will listen and act on their concerns.”
Following his selection, Mr Pitcher said: “My first priority is to be a ‘local’ MP. I will take local people’s concerns to Westminster and hold the powers-that-be to account.
“I will be urging the government to reduce the number of houses it believes this area needs, thereby allowing the local council to cut its estimate.
“This should end the ‘delivering housing is paramount’ nonsense spouted by Suffolk Coastal planners. I’m a firm believer in developing brown field sites first.”
Mr Pitcher, leader of the UKIP group on the Isle of Wight Council since 2013, is assistant constituencies manager for UKIP’s south-east region and one of the party’s national by-election team. He has been a senior manager in retailing and the charity sector and is former county vice-chairman of the Royal British Legion.
The Suffolk Coastal seat is currently held by Conservative MP Therese Coffey. Other candidates selected to run for election next may are Russell Whiting (Labour), James Sandbach (Liberal Democrat) and Rachel Smith-Lythe (Green).