Marco Cereste and MP Heidi Allen fail in bid to become elected mayor of Peterborough and Cambridgeshire
Former Peterborough City Council leader Marco Cereste has failed in his bid to become the first ever elected mayor of Peterborough and Cambridgeshire.
The controversial politician was cut from the list of potential Conservative candidates after a vote by senior members of his party over the weekend.
Heidi Allen, MP for South Cambridgeshire, also failed to make the shortlist of three candidates who will be whittled down to one on Saturday after a vote by all Cambridgeshire party members.
The choices are Cambridgeshire County Council leader Steve Count, Huntingdonshire district councillor Roger Harrison and East Cambridgeshire District Council leader James Palmer who has the backing of MP for Peterborough Stewart Jackson.
The winning councillor will start May’s election as the overwhelming favourite to win the vote.
It is also being reported elsewhere that Cambridge city councillor Rod Cantrill has been chosen as the Liberal Democrat candidate for May’s election, making it very likely that Peterborough will have no representative on the ballot.
Cllr Cantrill would join UKIP Cambridgeshire county councillor Paul Bullen and Ely-based entrepreneur Peter Dawe on the list of candidates with Labour yet to announce their choice.
The Green Party announces its candidate on Thursday.
The role of elected mayor has been created after Cambridgeshire councils voted in favour of devolution for the county.
The new arrangement will see the formation of a combined authority headed by the mayor.
The authority will feature a representative from all seven councils in the region and a representative of the Greater Cambridge Greater Peterborough Local Enterprise Partnership.
It will be given powers over transport and hundreds of millions of pounds to spend on housing and to support economic growth.