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Telegraph 14/06/67
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This is London: Telegraph 14/06/67 The Newspaper Archive

Daily Telegraph 14/06/1967PARLIAMENT OR TV FOR M.P. IN NEW COMPANY


Mr. Aidan Crawley, Conservative M.P. for West Derbyshire, would have to give up his Parliamentary career to become the chairman of the new London weekend television programme company.

Yesterday, the Independent Television Authority announced that they had made it clear that he would have to choose one or the other when the company begins operations in July, 1968.

Mr Crawley has been the Member for the constituency since 1962, when he won a by-election.  He has successfully defended the seat against Labour and Liberal opponents in two General Elections.

Minutes before he heard of the ITA statement, the West Derbyshire Conservative agent, Mr. Ray Allinson, announced that Mr. Crawley would continue as M.P. when he became chief of the company.


'Staggering development'

Mr. Allinson last night travelled to London on business, and said before setting off:  "I had spoken to Mr. Crawley about this several times, and was quite sure there was no possibility of him having to give up Parliament.  I was going to London for reasons altogether unconnected to this affair, but naturally I shall now be trying to sort out whether we face losing our M.P. or not.

"I made a statement that Mr. Crawley would continue in Parliament only minutes before I heard this staggering new development.  It's all a bit of a shock and rather embarrassing."

Mr. Crawley was a Labour M.P. for six years, resigning on the issue of nationalisation and joining the Conservatives a year later.  Spokesmen for both Liberal and Labour associations in West Derbyshire pronounced themselves "delighted" at the prospect of a by-election.

Daily Telegraph

The Daily Telegraph (in 1967 still called The Daily Telegraph and Morning Post) is now Britain's biggest-selling broadsheet daily, owned by the Canadian-born Conrad Black.

The paper follows a Conservative line, and is widely recognised as having the largest daily news coverage.

You can find out more about the Daily and Sunday Telegraph at

PMC Comment

No, not sleaze (this time), but an honest quandary for one Tory MP.  Crawley had been involved from the beginning of ITV, mainly at the news provider ITN.

On resigning from ITN, he moved to Parliament as a Labour MP, though he defected to the Conservatives soon after (in those days, the two parties were completely different to now, both approximating to modern left-of-centre.  Nobody would have thought of defecting to Thorpe's Liberals, still to re-emerge from the doldrums).

In short, however, the Telegraph's implicit question (go to LWT or stay in the Commons) was answered within hours - he went to LWT, remaining until that company ploughed into financial dire straits.

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