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Solihull MP Lorely Burt in supermarket clash with Tory rival

Liberal Democrat Lorely Burt crossed swords with Conservative rival Julian Knight in Morrisons, after taking umbrage when he dubbed himself a "shadow MP"

Lorely Burt
Lorely Burt

With Parliament in recess MPs are taking a summer off from debating across the green benches - so political rivals in Solihull opted to argue it out in a supermarket instead.

Liberal Democrat Lorely Burt crossed swords with Conservative rival Julian Knight in Morrisons, after taking umbrage when he dubbed himself a "shadow MP" during an advice surgery at the store.

Mr Knight demanded an apology after accusing Mrs Burt of "aggressively" quizzing him in full view of customers at the supermarket in Grove Road.

But she hit back, saying she was responding to claims from a voter that Mr Knight was "passing himself off as the MP".

Mr Knight, who is the Conservative candidate for Solihull at next year's general election, admitted calling himself a "shadow MP" during last Saturday's surgery, also attended by two Tory councillors.

But he said he did it to "make it abundantly clear" he was not the MP.

Mr Knight added: "Mrs Burt started taking lots of photographs of our little community stand and aggressively questioned me over my right to be in a supermarket meeting the public. I don't think it is right that we should be treated this way.

"I will be writing asking her to apologise for interfering in this way and asking her to ensure it doesn't happen again."

But Mrs Burt called Mr Knight's allegation "daft" and "over-blown".

A spokesman said: "Lorely called in to Morrisons in response to a call from a constituent who said the Conservative candidate was passing himself off as the MP.

"It was nothing more than a friendly back-and-forth between two political rivals - far more tame than most discussions in the House of Commons.

"In the meantime Lorely, as the actual MP for Solihull, holds advice surgeries every Friday, either in Solihull Connect or Shirley Police Station."

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