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Wednesday, 26 November 2014

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Councillor has eye on MP’s seat

A COPELAND borough councillor is bidding to become Labour MP for Carlisle.

Gillian Troughton0908
shortlist: Coun Gillian Troughton

Gillian Troughton, who represents Bransty and is a member of Copeland’s policy-making Executive, is on a shortlist of four women from which Labour’s parliamentary candidate will be chosen in September.

One of her rivals is Allerdale Borough Council’s deputy leader Barbara Cannon, who is also a county councillor and who unsuccessfully contested the Penrith & Border parliamentary seat at the last general election.

The other shortlisted candidates are Carlisle City councillor Lee Sherriff and Emma Lewell-Buck, a South Tyneside councillor.

A 10-strong panel (five men, five women) drew up the shortlist. Final selection will be made by a ballot involving all members of Carlisle Constituency Labour Party at a ‘hustings’ on September 23 in Tullie House, Carlisle.

Whoever wins will attempt to wrest the Carlisle seat back to Labour from Tory John Stevenson at the next general election.

Gillian Troughton took her first steps into local politics when she fought Bransty ward at last year’s borough elections, and was appointed straight on to the all-Labour ruling Executive where she has special responsibility for finance and resources.

Trained as a doctor, Coun Troughton formerly worked for Cumbria County Council in the children’s services team.

She is well-known as a charity fundraiser and two years ago swam the equivalent of the English Channel to raise funds for her local church, St Bridget’s, Moresby. She regularly takes part in the annual Midnight Walk and has raised several hundreds of pounds for the Hospice at Home charity. She is particularly passionate about health issues.

Yesterday Coun Troughton told The Whitehaven News: “I am committed to campaigning for better public services, our hospitals and schools. The government has no plan for growth, when our communities need jobs and hope for the future.

“Despite criticism of Labour, borrowing is increasing and the economy is in recession.

“I am a qualified doctor and worked as a strategic planner in Children’s Services. Working in the NHS and with vulnerable children has driven my politics, everyone deserves the opportunity to fulfil their potential. I took the opportunity of voluntary redundancy from my politically-restricted post in order to stand for election and fight for what I believe to be important.

“As with Bransty, I am confident voters at Carlisle will understand why having me as their MP with a Labour government behind me would lead to a better future for everyone in Cumbria.”

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