Hustings cancelled after Beaconsfield Tories threaten to report charity – But was it all a PR stunt from rival candidates?

The husting was to be held at the Girl Guide Hall in Beaconsfield on the evening of December 9.

However on the day of the event the Hall received a message from the Beaconsfield Conservative Association expressing how they thought the event wasn’t a “proper hustings” and due to having “no choice of date and at short notice” that Conservative candidate for the constituency Joy Morrissey had to decline the invitation.

The letter followed a statement from the event organisers which said “All candidates were invited. Joy Morrissey of the Conservative party has declined to attend.”

The Conservative party believes this to be misleading suggesting it would “create political capital out of Joy Morrissey’s absence.”

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The letter from the Association finished by stating if the facts in the letter weren’t read out at the hustings then they would “have to consider referral of this matter to the Charity Commission.”

The hustings went ahead at a different location without Ms Morrissey.

Dominic Grieve, the former Conservative MP for the area before being ousted from his party for differing views on Brexit, is now running as an independent candidate.

He said of Monday’s events: “I find this behaviour deeply regrettable and entirely against the spirit of Democratic debate, it is not in the spirit of democratic debate where candidates themselves to questions and scrutiny.

“Quite what Ms Morrisey has to hide, I’m not sure.”

Green candidate Zoe Hatch added: “This is just another example of bullying behaviour by the Tory Party.

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“On a national level Boris Johnson won’t submit to the same interviews and debates that every other national party leader has and locally their outfit are going around trying to dictate the nature of the debate.”

Joy Morrissey has attended five hustings and emphasises how she couldn’t attend the one on Sunday due to a conflict in her schedule.

Her team also believe that the organiser of the hustings which Ms Morrissey didn’t attend, Julian Ingram, did not act impartially as “he’s a member of Dominic Grieve’s election campaign team.”

Joy Morrissey sent out a tweet on Sunday saying that she was invited just 24 hours before, a claim which organisers state is untrue.

Some twitter users claimed this was a “stunt by Dominic Grieve supporters.”