Published: February 7, 2010
Exclusive: MP 'regrets' expenses mistake but is confident of re-election

Burnham-On-Sea's MP has this weekend apologised to voters for "making a mistake" over his controversial expense claims - but says he is confident of being re-elected at this year's General Election.

Talking to Burnham-On-Sea.com on the town's seafront, Mr Heathcoat-Amory admitted that he regrets his expense claims, which famously included £380 for horse manure.

Having last week repaid almost £30,000 of gardening and cleaning expenses, we asked him how he rates his performance since the last General Election and whether he'd have done anything differently.

He responded: "We can all learn, that's true of any human being."

"They learn by experience with new issues and new challenges. Mistakes get made and we all made a mistake over our expenses. I made one and that is something I regret."

He added: "I think I've done some things right and some things wrong, but I'll stand on my record and I'm looking forwards to the election."

When Burnham-On-Sea.com asked him how confident he is of retaining his position during this year's general election, he responded: "I've won six in a row - I think this will be lucky seven."

Meanwhile, Tessa Munt, the Liberal Democrat's parliamentary candidate, told Burnham-On-Sea.com on Sunday (February 7th): "It will be an interesting election. I've received a very positive response on local doorsteps. Many local people are outraged at what's happened with our MP's expenses."

"I am confident that I would be a diligent and hard-working MP who would follow a completely different style to that taken by Mr Heathcoat-Amory over his quarter of a century in the seat."

Watch our online video of the full interview by clicking on the video above

 


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