Liz Truss launches final stage of bid to become Prime Minister in Peterborough - and makes 'first pledge' to come back to visit city

Conservative MP visited Little Miracles on first day since reaching final two in race to become PM

By Stephen Briggs
Friday, 22nd July 2022, 9:16 am

Liz Truss was on the campaign trail in Peterborough as she started the final stage of her bid to become Prime Minister in the city.

Mrs Truss visited Peterborough charity Little Miracles in Ravensthorpe, a day after she reached the final two in the race to take over from Boris Johnson.

The Foreign Secretary met with children, parents and staff at the charity during her hour long visit on 21 July.

Foreign Secretary Liz Truss visits Little Miracles at Ravensthorpe. One of the children Ivo steals the show

Peterborough ‘dynamic’ part of England

Speaking to The Peterborough Telegraph, Mrs Truss said she was ‘a big fan of Peterborough’ – and also pledged to come back to see Little Miracles if she is successful in her leadership bid.

Asked why she had launched the next stage of her campaign in the city – and what support she would give to councils like Peterborough who have had to make big service cuts, she said: “Well, I'm a big fan of Peterborough, and course I'm here partly because of Paul (Bristow, MP for Peterborough) the excellent local MP and also fantastic council leader (cllr Wayne Fitzgerald) as well, who I've met on several occasions before.

"I think Peterborough is exactly the type of place that we need to continue to attract investment into. It's a dynamic, dynamic part of country, lots of opportunities to attract new businesses, and new industries – areas like high technology, areas like pharmacy. I want to work with the local MP and the local council.”

Foreign Secretary Liz Truss speaks to Little Miracles CEO Michelle King and Paul Bristow during her visit to the charity

She was also asked by Tim Bedward-Jones, chair of trustees at Little Miracles, if she would return to the charity with her new health secretary if she was elected.

Mrs Truss replied: “Of course I will. That is my first pledge today.”

‘Strong track record’

The Foreign Secretary’s campaign was backed by both Mr Bristow and Cllr Fitzgerald.

Foreign Secretary Liz Truss visits Little Miracles at Ravensthorpe.

Mr Bristow said: “Liz Truss is a leader who is ready to go, she has that experience in Government, she has that record of delivery. When she was Foreign Secretary she was meeting people across the world including President Putin, she is able to lead that effort in Ukraine straight away, making sure we remain united, and she has a strong track record of delivery.

"She is also an East Anglian MP so she is not a million miles away from Peterborough, and it is no surprise, like the previous Prime Minister three years ago, that she is starting her campaign here in Peterborough because she realises Peterborough’s potential, this is a city with a lot going for it.”

Cllr Fitzgerald said; “I think Liz has demonstrated the qualities in terms of Foreign Secretary to the public at large, and she would have the confidence of members of the Conservative Party. Not that Rishi is a bad person, but when you have to make a choice between two, which we are now down to, I think I would be favouring Liz Truss at the moment.

“I have met her numerous times , and I am impressed with the way she operates, the way she conducts herself.

"I came off her hustings this morning where she said she would have a zero tolerance for bad behaviour in public life, particularly from MPs, because the public have been disappointed with what has been going on in Westminster and this is an opportunity to reset the clock and go forward with a new Prime Minister and a fresh momentum.”

What will Liz Truss do for Peterborough as Prime Minister?

When asked what Mrs Truss could bring to Peterborough specifically, councillor Fitzgerald said: “I think that is just about the ideology of the party in the way we think, in the way we view the world.

"It doesn’t matter if it is Peterborough or Stoke or Leicester or Manchester, I think the ideological position of the Conservatives permeates through, whoever is running it.

“Each individual will bring their own characteristics and emphasis. I was pleased to hear she will put more emphasis into social care, which as most people know in Peterborough, like elsewhere in the country, is under a great deal of pressure, so I think she wants to see more money going into that, rather than being perhaps lost in the NHS pot of money, and that is really a good thing social care and helps residents of Peterborough get the care they need when they want it.”

The Peterborough Telegraph has contacted North West Cambridgeshire MP Shailesh Vara to ask who he is backing in the Conservative Leadership race.