Howard's Way 20 July 2006

Contributed by editor on Jul 20, 2006 - 12:05 AM

HOWARD'S WAY.... a weekly column from Michael Howard MP

July 2006


Last Thursday evening nearly 300 members of the Folkestone and Hythe Conservative Association met in the Leas Cliff Hall to choose the Conservative Candidate for the constituency for the next general Election.

For Sandra and me it brought back vivid memories of the evening, 24 years ago, when I was selected to succeed Sir Albert Costain. It is a milestone in your political career, and your life, that you never forget.

Last Thursday’s meeting was the culmination of a lengthy process during which the number of candidates had been whittled down from around 50 to the final 3 who were interviewed at the Leas Cliff Hall. All 3 were worthy contenders, as were many of those who had failed to progress that far. The task facing the Association was difficult. But I am delighted with the choice they finally made.

Damian Collins is an exceptional young man with all the qualities that are needed to make an excellent Member of Parliament. He and his wife, Sarah, intend to make their home here immediately, just as Sandra and I did all those years ago.

Now he has to prove to you that he is the best person to represent you in Parliament. I hope to have the opportunity to introduce him to many of you in the time that remains between now and the General Election.

Until that election comes – and it is likely to be many years away - I shall, of course, continue to represent you to the best of my ability.

There is still much to do, not least the continuing fight to save Selsted and Harcourt Primary Schools. My contacts with the County Council continue and I am in the process of convening a meeting of all Shepway’s County Councillors to discuss the issue.

I continue to believe that the County Council’s proposals have no merit and cannot be justified and will do all I can to fight them every inch of the way.