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Tories choose two more poll candidates

By Western Morning News  |  Posted: February 27, 2013

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A Twitter-mad councillor has emerged as the latest Tory candidate to fight the general election in the Westcountry, writes Phil Goodwin.

Coventry City Council cabinet member and legal executive Kevin Foster, who was born in Plymouth, has been chosen to stand for election in Torbay.

He will attempt to unseat Liberal Democrat Adrian Sanders, the MP since 1997 who currently holds a majority of more than 4,000.

Mr Foster hit the headlines in 2011 when he ignored a council ban on mobile phones and sent 103 tweets during a single meeting. He was selected from a field of four at an election primary in Torquay on Monday, in front of 130 party members and registered electors – in a tight contest which required three votes.

After the result at the Palace Hotel, Mr Foster said the area had "exciting opportunities".

"I have many happy memories of time spent in Paignton as a child and of working in the area to help fund my University studies," he added.

"For me this is not just about a selection, but a homecoming to the county I was born in."

The list of Conservative candidates set to challenge for mostly Liberal Democrat-controlled seats in 2015 is now almost complete.

On Saturday, a former BBC journalist who currently sits on Swindon Borough Council was nominated as the party's prospective parliamentary candidate (PPC) for North Devon.

Peter Heaton-Jones, who has presented the news on BBC Radio Essex, 5 Live and BBC Swindon, will stand against current North Devon Lib Dem MP Nick Harvey in the election, which will take place in 2015.

The Party has selected its candidates through a series of primary elections.

Following a short-listing process, members of the North Devon Conservative association gathered at the Cedars Inn in Sticklepath on Saturday to pick their candidate from a selection of four.

Mr Heaton-Jones, who was also head of marketing at Australian radio station ABC, was selected by local Conservative party members after a three- week interview process.

The 49-year-old, who was born in Surrey, said he will be relocating to the area in the very near future.

He revealed that he has "always loved North Devon".

The party's final candidate to be chosen for Devon and Cornwall will contest Plymouth's Moor View constituency, currently held by Labour MP Alison Seabeck by a majority of 1,588.

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