New user? Register here:
Email Address:
Password:
Retype Password:
First Name:
Last Name:
Existing user? Login here:
 
 
News >

Defeated Tory priest wants to stand again


THE FIRST currently ordained priest in the Church of England able to stand for Parliament under new legislation suffered a heavy defeat at the polls, but has every intention of standing again next time.

The priest, the Revd Michael Windridge, a late ordinand, stood as Conservative candidate in Blyth, an ex-mining area and Labour stronghold in the North East. Labour retained the seat with 19,659 votes, and Mr Windridge was beaten into third place with 4982.

He described his defeat as a political “crucifixion” experience, but said on Tuesday: “I’m determined to try for a winnable seat next time. It was an extraordinary experience, and I wouldn’t have missed it for the world.”

Mr Windridge, who has permission to officiate in the diocese of Norwich, but who now works principally as a part-time carer for his elderly father, is deputy chairman of South Norfolk Conservative Association, and has been a member of South Norfolk Council since 1999.

It had been the hallmark of the constituency campaign that it was dull and passionless, he said, and the level of political alienation was disturbing.

The hustings meeting organised by Churches Together had been the exception to a complete lack of interest by the many voluntary, business and educational organisations in the constituency, Mr Windridge found. In his own campaign, he spoke of “the worrying levels of welfare dependency, drug-taking, under-age drinking, and yob culture” in Blyth.

His Labour opponent, Ronnie Campbell, was described by The Times in a leader as “unrestructured Old Labour”. “He impressed the extremely sparse audience [at the hustings] by referring to al-Qaeda as Ikea,” said Mr Windridge.

Synod man must wait for election

Job of the week

Chief Administrator

South East

CHICHESTER CATHEDRAL CHIEF ADMINISTRATOR The Chapter of Chichester seek applicants for the office of Chief Executive Officer, known as COMMUNAR The Communar is responsible for strategic financ...  Read More

Signup for job alerts
Top feature

A bountiful harvest grown in faith

A bountiful harvest grown in faith

In this extract from their new book, Susie Weldon and Sue Campbell tell the story of Christians and Muslims in Africa who are finding new ways to farm, based on their scriptures  Subscribe to read more

Question of the week
Should the UK take in more refugees fleeing Islamic State's terrorists?

To prevent multiple voting, we now ask readers to be logged in. This is free, quick and easy, honestly. Click here to login or register

Top comment

Corporate tax avoider? Shame on you, then!

It might be legal, but is it moral? Geoff Daintree on a new report that challenges people who pay as little tax as they can  Subscribe to read more

Thu 30 Oct 14 @ 13:01
RT @SCM_PressFlash sale - 20% of all Ethics and Philosophy titles. Ends midnight 31st Oct. http://t.co/SSqXnxYEch http://t.co/FOL8yPLV2P

Thu 30 Oct 14 @ 12:46
RT @FaithDebatesYou can read Professor @LindaWoodhead's analysis of the @YouGov Anglican clergy survey in tomorrow's @churchtimes #FutureCofE