NORTH Devon’s Conservative parliamentary candidate has been accused of misleading local constituents about his role as a councillor in Swindon.
Peter Heaton-Jones was elected as a parliamentary candidate for the Tories in February 2013 but had already been elected as a member of Swindon Borough Council.
And one Ilfracombe man has raised concerns after receiving a campaign leaflet from Mr Heaton-Jones which states he lives in North Devon.
Toby Ebert corr said: “I thought it was strange he said he was living in North Devon.
“I knew he was a councillor in Swindon so I went on their website where it says he sits on various committees and owns a property there.
“I don’t think it is right to tell one set of people ‘I live in Swindon’ while telling another ‘I live in North Devon’.”
But Mr Heaton-Jones said he had never hidden the fact that he served as a borough councillor.
He told the Journal he had a house in Swindon but lived in Bishops Nympton.
“These are issues the LibDems have raised before, and I imagine that’s where they’ve come from again,” he said.
“I take it as a huge compliment that this is all they can find to say, and it shows we’ve got them on the run.”
Mr Ebert also raised the fact Mr Heaton-Jones had only attended four council meetings in Swindon since July.
But Mr Heaton-Jones responded: “There have only been four full council meetings since July, and I have attended every one.
“So I should be thanking whoever has raised this issue for highlighting my 100% record. Serving the residents who elect me is something I take very seriously.”
However, Mr Heaton-Jones failed to attend four committee meetings since July.
“Ninety-five per cent of my time is spent in North Devon,” he added. “But, as with virtually all parliamentary candidates, there are previous commitments you have to honour.
“It’s a matter of public record that I was a borough councillor beforehand, and I don’t believe in letting down the people who have elected me.
“I’ve always said I will stand down as a councillor at the earliest opportunity and focus completely on North Devon, and I will.”