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

Headteacher

North West

ST MICHAEL'S CE HIGH SCHOOL, CHORLEY, LANCASHIRE 'Excellence within a Christian Context' Pending the retirement of our present highly successful Headteacher in December 2015, the governors are seek...  Read More

Signup for job alerts
Top feature

A vase? You must be kidding

A vase? You must be kidding

Flower festivals have become big business, attracting visitors and funds. Jemima Thackray plots their growth  Subscribe to read more

Question of the week
Regardless of the amount given, are there fewer people donating to your church than in previous years?

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

Smug and weird — no wonder it’s a turn-off

Congregations need to welcome newcomers with a sensitivity to their questions and doubts, says Christopher Whitby  Read More

Thu 30 Jul 15 @ 17:24
Get tomorrow's Church Times on iPhone or iPad. Subscribers can download our app for free. http://t.co/wxeFZGHDf5 http://t.co/4TjKVIzVEF

Thu 30 Jul 15 @ 17:01
RT @CHBookshopMembers of our Friends Scheme - make sure you check out http://t.co/ZIk81T9U5y on Monday! http://t.co/QXGsPJJS2Y