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Cleverly sets his sights on seats

We’re pleased to report that Conservative Assembly member for London James Cleverly is eyeing up two plum Westminster seats on the outskirts of the capital

Ex-army major Cleverly, youth ambassador to the mayor Boris Johnson, is to throw his hat in the ring for the rock solid seat of Beckenham (majority 14,200), where the Tories will hold an American-style primary to replace the retiring MP Jacqui Lait.

He’s also interested in the more marginal seat of Orpington, in Kent (maj: 5,100) where the sitting MP John Horam is stepping down.

Cleverly is a rising star in Tory ranks and was elected to City Hall last year representing the Bexley and Bromley, which covers the parliamentary Beckenham seat and borders on Orpington.

He told OBV Blog: ‘I always wanted to have a crack at the Commons, and these seats are in my neck of the woods. But as you can imagine, they are going to be very hotly contested.’

As a long term resident in the suburbs of south-east London, Cleverly seems to be ideally positioned. He is highly regarded by the mayor and chairs the health and public services committee.

Cleverly has also built up a formidable public profile, and is often seen representing City Hall on television. We wish him the best of luck!

By Lester Holloway

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4 Responses

  1. Slight error in your report there; Orpington’s not in Kent (although it was until 1965 and still carries that postal address). It’s in SE London and forms part of Mr Cleverly’s London Assembly constituency. (It is, in fact, in the same London Borough as Beckenham.)

  2. Thanks for the correction. I guess it’s like Sutton, part of a London borough but with a county postal address.

    I have just discovered that Orpington has its own breed of chickens, which surely must be the only place in London to hold such an honour.

    Robert Elms must be told!

  3. My pleasure, and news to me about the chickens! Hope James succeeds there.

  4. Yes, if you type “orpington chickens” into google quite a lot comes up, including this wiki page:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Orpington_(chicken)

    But I’m sure James won’t be counting his chickens

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