Daventry’s MP has given his backing to Andrea Leadsom to become the next leader of the Conservatives and Prime Minister.
Chris Heaton-Harris gave his backing to his constituency neighbour on Thursday evening, saying: “I’m proud to back my friend and fellow Northants MP Andrea Leadsom for leader and PM - Andrea will be the fresh start we need.”
Mrs Leadsom, MP for South Northamptonshire, announced on Thursday morning that she had put her name for ward for the leadership contest.
She joins a list of other Tories vying for the support of their fellow party MPs.
On Twitter Mrs Leadsom said: “Delighted to say I’m running for the Conservatives Leadership.
“Let’s make the most of the Brexit opportunities!”
In a cameraphone video taken outside the Houses of Parliament on Thursday, Mrs Leadsom made her first official announcement having posted her nomination papers.
She said: “I am delighted to say that I have put in my nomination papers for Conservative leadership today.
“I have seen a huge opportunity from the result of the referendum.
“Britain, the UK can be so much better in the world.
“The future for our children, our grandchildren will be so great.
“But what we have to do now is to all put together and make that opportunity a reality.”
Mrs Leadsom had been a prominent campaigner for the Leave campaign, appearing alongside Boris Johnson on the BBC and ITV debates in the run-up to the referendum where she generally impressed viewers and political reporters.
Mrs Leadsom’s fellow candidates include Justice Secretary Michael Gove, Home Secretary Theresa May, MP Liam Fox and Work and Pensions Secretary Stephen Crabb.
Conservative MPs will be balloted until there are two candidates left, who will then be voted for by Tory party members. The new Prime Minister will be in place by early September.
Mrs Leadsom worked in the financial industry from 1993 to 2009.
She was first elected to Parliament in 2010 for the newly created South Northamptonshire constituency.
She was first appointed to the Treasury Select Committee, later becoming Economic Secretary to the Treasury. In 2015 following the General Election, she became Minister of State at the Department for Energy and Climate Change.
In 2011 she, along Chris Heaton-Harris, and George Eustice MP for Camborne and Redruth, founded the Fresh Start Project to detail reforms that could be made to the European Union and the UK’s relationship within it.