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Shrewsbury Labour candidate Laura Davies facing no confidence vote tonight

By Dominic Robertson | Shrewsbury | Politics | Published:

Labour's parliamentary candidate for Shrewsbury is tonight facing a vote of no confidence that if successful, could lead to her de-selection.

Dr Laura Davies

Dr Laura Davies, who has contested the Shrewsbury & Atcham seat for Labour in the last two general elections, has declined to comment on the ballot, which has been initiated by members of her Constituency Labour Party (CLP).

It is understood that the reasoning put forward for the vote of no confidence is that Dr Davies had deviated from the CLP's position on the Future Fit reorganisation of the county's major hospitals.

She had suggested the creation of one super hospital between Shrewsbury and Telford to serve both communities. The CLP has agreed a position where both Royal Shrewsbury Hospital and Princess Royal Hospital Telford both retain 24 hour A&E departments and receive substantial investment.

Neither position is the option being put forward by the county's health bosses, who have £312m to reorganise the hospitals based on RSH hosting Shropshire's only A&E, along with consultant led women and children's services moving from Telford to the Shrewsbury site. They are currently waiting final approval for the plan from the Health Secretary Matt Hancock, who is reviewing the proposal at the request of Telford & Wrekin Council.

Expectation

The CLP meeting was taking place at around 7.30pm at the Martin Wilson School in Castlefields, Shrewsbury.

One party member said the vote was a result of a group who had been opposed to Dr Davies since she was selected.

They said: "It is madness. There is a certain group within the Labour Party locally and nationally who have developed over the last two or three years that have attempted to deselect sitting MPs and candidates up and down the country.

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"It is on the record that Dr Davies fought this constituency extremely well on two occasions and that everyone had an expectation that she would be successful on the next occasion. She is very hard working and well known in the constituency and has had a very positive response."

It is understood that any member of of the Shrewsbury & Atcham CLP who attends Wednesday's meeting will be able to vote on the matter, although it would be up to the National Executive Committee to ultimately decide on any de-selection of a candidate.

Dr Davies has lost to the Conservative Daniel Kawczynski at the past two general elections.

In 2015 Mr Kawczynski secured 24,628 votes to Dr Davies's 15,063, although the margin was narrowed in 2017 with the Conservative retaining his seat by 29,073 votes to his Labour opponent's 22,446.

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