PM heads from front bench to beach front

HIS predecessor opted for exotic destinations such as Barbados, Egypt and Florida.

Anthony Bond

HIS predecessor opted for exotic destinations such as Barbados, Egypt and Florida.

But with a gloomy economic forecast ahead, Gordon Brown has decided to follow the example of many cash-strapped families this summer and take a UK break - with the Suffolk coast apparently in his sights.

It is thought that during Parliament's summer recess, the Prime Minister and his family may spend a week in the Southwold area before heading up to his family home in Scotland.

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Teresa Baggott, mayor of Southwold and landlady of The Red Lion, said she would be thrilled if he visited the town.

“For him to holiday here would be fantastic,” she said. “There would probably be a few eyes opened at first if he was walking down the street with his family but he would be more than welcome.

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“Historically Southwold is a very Conservative town and always has been but I do not think that anyone will bat an eyelid. Politics should be put out of the way during the summer anyway.

“It is a fantastic place to bring a young family because we have got a great big stretch of beach and beach huts which children enjoy and then there is the pier with all the great things on there.”

And Mrs Baggott was keen to suggest that the Prime Minister visits The Red Lion. “I think he would love a pint of Adnams in here with some local fish and chips - that is what people from London miss isn't it?

With tourism a crucial part of the economy in the county- worth £1.084 billion and employing 30,000 people - the Suffolk Tourism Partnership (STP) was also keen to welcome the PM - especially as it may help the county's development.

Scott Dolling from STP said: “We would be delighted to welcome the Prime Minister to Suffolk this summer. We have the perfect antidote to help him forget about opinion polls and by-elections. Our outstanding coast, countryside and heritage offers the perfect place for a break and if we send him off to the coast, some of our transport links by both road or rail might move further up the agenda.”

But with rising food and petrol prices and concerns that a recession may be on the way, not everyone is happy about the idea.

When asked what she would say if Mr Brown called to make a reservation, one guest house owner in Southwold replied: “I would tell him there is no room at the inn. He is ruining the country and he would not be welcome around here I can assure you of that. It is a Conservative area and people would probably pelt him with bad eggs.”

Five things to keep Gordon occupied on his holiday.

1) Fish and chips at Aldeburgh

2) Framlingham Castle

3) Pleasurewood Hills, Lowestoft.

4) Greyhound racing at Yarmouth Stadium

5) Suffolk Wildlife Park, Kessingland

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