Nick Bowles wins cancer fight and gears up for election battle

MP for Grantham and Stamford Nick Boles with Prime Minister Theresa May.
MP for Grantham and Stamford Nick Boles with Prime Minister Theresa May.
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Stamford MP Nick Boles has this week announced he is expected to make a full recovery from cancer – and has decided to stand for re-election.

In the hours following Prime Minister Theresa May’s announcement of a general election on Tuesday, Tory MP Mr Boles told the Mercury that he was undecided on whether to compete for the Grantham and Stamford seat.

But the following day, after discussions with loved ones and colleagues, his mind was made up to stand.

Mr Boles said: “I have been talking to family and friends, as well as local Conservative supporters, about whether to offer myself as the Conservative candidate in the election. I have now decided to put myself forward and will be writing to my local Conservative association to ask them to re-adopt me as their candidate.

“Last week I completed my final treatment for non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Recent scans have shown that the cancer has been eradicated and doctors tell me I can expect to make a full recovery by the end of the summer.

“Although my current state of health will prevent me from playing an energetic part in the election campaign, I am confident that if I am re-elected I will be able to resume my duties as Member of Parliament with renewed vigour within a very few months.

“Ultimately, if I am adopted as the Conservative candidate, it will be for local people to decide whether they want me to continue in the job. But I hope very much that they will give me the chance to turn the page on a testing year and re-dedicate myself to their service as their representative in Parliament.”

Mr Boles revealed in October last year that doctors had found a cancerous tumour in his head and he has since undergone several rounds of chemotherapy. He successfully battled Hodgkin’s lymphoma in 2007.

Following a majority vote in the House of Commons on Wednesday, the general election will be held on June 8.

Mr Boles added: “I strongly support the Prime Minister’s decision to hold a general election. I believe it is in the national interest for the government to have a renewed mandate as it begins the Brexit negotiations.”

Mr Boles was elected into the Grantham and Stamford seat in 2010 and went on to become Planning Minister in 2012, then Minister of State for Skills and Equalities until June 2016.

l Rutland and Melton MP Alan Duncan (Con), who has held the seat for 25 years, intends to put himself forward for re-election, as does Tory MP John Hayes who has held the seat for South Holland and the Deepings since 
1997.