Sadness at death of Rutland and Melton candidate
Tributes have been paid to General Election candidate Anthony Watchorn who died on Wednesday.
The Whissendine farmer, who was 69, was standing as an Independent for the Rutland and Melton constituency in the December 12 poll.
Mr Watchorn was due to appear at hustings in Uppingham and Oakham next week with the other five candidates.
Speaking on Wednesday his sister Rosalind, said: “Anthony was taken to hospital yesterday afternoon and his condition got worse. He sadly passed away at Peterborough Hospital.”
Mr Watchorn leaves a partner and three children. No cause was given for his death.
Candidates and councillors from across the political spectrum have all paid tribute.
Conservative candidate Alicia Kearns said her heart goes out to Anthony’s family and friends.
“Following his deeply sad and sudden death, we will cease all campaigning here in Rutland and Melton for the rest of the week out of respect to him and his family.”
Labour candidate Andy Thomas said he had been looking forward to debating with Anthony at various hustings.
He said: “I admire him for standing alone as an independent without all the support a national party gives.”
Ukip candidate Marietta King said: “Anthony and his family have been part of Whissendine for ever! Many will remember being told about Anthony helping out with his tractor to ferry children to school when the river flooded below the pub. Condolences to his family.”
Rutland county councillor Abigail MacCartney (Lib-Dem, Cottesmore) said: “Anthony was a fighter like no other and will be sadly missed. He was enormously looking forward to this election and it is such a great shame that he has not had this chance to make himself heard on a wider stage.”