Anti-ULEZ MP sets his sights on fish and chips with 'petition to absolutely no one'

Following his ULEZ-driven win, a Conservative MP has made his latest campaign and chips.
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A call for a new chippy in his town centre may seem like a harmless appeal but a Tory MP’s latest mission has come under fire.

Uxbridge and South Ruislip MP Steve Tuckwell is calling on residents to sign up on his website to support bringing a fish and chip shop to Uxbridge town centre.

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But critics suggest the call is just an effort to get people to sign up to his mailing list and question who the petition is aimed at.

My Tuckwell writes on his website: “We have a fish and chip shop in Cowley and one near St Andrew’s Park, but we don’t in Uxbridge town centre – don’t you think we need one? Why not back my campaign and help support our local economy by getting a chippy in Uxbridge.”

Appealing to voters’ stomachs may be part of the Tory machine’s campaign strategy. Greg Hands, MP for Chelsea and Fulham and minister for London, is currently campaigning to revive the Chelsea bun. Mr Tuckwell said the idea for a chip shop in Uxbridge town centre came from listening to constituents.

“We need to improve high streets and support local businesses. Any new ventures, like a new chippy, bring jobs to the area and support other local businesses if they source their products,” he said.

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“Who doesn’t love a chippy? I look forward to inviting the naysayers to the new chippy when it opens.”

Tory MP Steve Tuckwell's 'petition' to bring a fish and chip to Uxbridge has been criticised by Labour candidate Danny Beales.Tory MP Steve Tuckwell's 'petition' to bring a fish and chip to Uxbridge has been criticised by Labour candidate Danny Beales.
Tory MP Steve Tuckwell's 'petition' to bring a fish and chip to Uxbridge has been criticised by Labour candidate Danny Beales.

Mr Tuckwell became the MP in Boris Johnson’s former seat with victory in a by-election, last July, was steeped in the ULEZ debate.

He defeated Labour’s Danny Beales, who remains the party’s candidate for the constituency when voters go to the polls later this year or early in 2025.

Mr Beales told LondonWorld: “Uxbridge and South Ruislip deserves so much better than this, it needs a full-time MP focused on tackling important issues - delivering a new hospital, tackling the cost of living crisis and improving public safety.

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“Not a part-time MP, petitioning absolutely no one for more fish and chips.”

Meirion Jones, editor of the Bureau of Investigative Journalism, suggested the campaign is intended to gather email addresses to target during the election.

Jones said: “My concern is that people are being conned into thinking they're backing a non-existent campaign for a fish and chip shop when this is a phishing exercise.

“I wish Steve Tuckwell well in opening a chippy after the election - I suggest he calls it The Tuck Well Inn.”

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Mr Tuckwell said: “Like my other literature, it (the campaign) contains an opt-in for people to provide their details if they would like to keep hearing what I am doing on their behalf as the local MP.”

Responding to a post by Mr Tuckwell on X, one user of the former Twitter noted that the MP, when he was a councillor on Hillingdon’s planning committee, was in part responsible for rejecting a planning application for a fish and chip shop in the town centre in 2019.

Mr Tuckwell said the committee, which included Labour councillors, decided unanimously to reject the application because the applicant did not meet the required planning standards.

“Any future prospective applicants would also have to meet all the necessary criteria,” Tuckwell said.