Tealby businessman Kelly Smith has announced he is seeking the Conservative Party candidacy for Boston and Skegness.
The 41-year-old was recently runner-up to Gloucestershire-based lawyer Victoria Atkins in the ‘open primary’ for Horncastle and Louth.
Boston & Skegness became available last week when sitting MP Mark Simmonds stood down, citing the demands of the job on his family.
The safer nature of Horncastle and Louth made its Tory party officials more open to an outsider, but Boston & Skegness is seen as more marginal, with UKIP a potential winner. This has seen some Tory backing for a local candidate, with county councillor Richard Davies backing Kelly Smith, despite UKIP said to be seriously considering its deputy party chairman Neil Hamilton as its candidate.
Kelly Smith believes he has the right mix of local knowledge, council and business experience to be an effective MP. The former county councillor has operated an IT business and currently has a food retail business. He is also deputy chairman of Lincolnshire Conservatives.
“Having lived in Lincolnshire all my life, I have a real and instinctive passion for the area, which is why I won’t stand elsewhere,” he said.
Boston and Skegness Tories have yet to decide their election process, but UKIP is set to choose its candidate on September 11.
“Although I will be applying, there will no doubt be many, many more doing the same,” Kelly said.