PPA and CAP director wins race to contest marginal seat for Tories

PPA director of external affairs Owen Meredith has been confirmed as the Conservative Party's candidate for the marginal seat of Newcastle under Lyme in the upcoming general election.

Meredith: standing for Newcastle under Lyme
Meredith: standing for Newcastle under Lyme

Meredith has worked for the publishing trade body since March 2014, initially as head of public affairs. He worked for the Conservatives in parliament prior to this, according to LinkedIn.

He has also been a non-executive director of Committee of Advertising Practice for three years, representing the PPA on its non-broadcast committee. However, he is abstaining from meetings while he is campaigning, a spokeswoman for the CAP said.

The Newcastle under Lyme seat was held by Labour's Paul Farrelly in 2015 in a narrow victory – he won 16,520 votes to Conservative Tony Cox's 15,870.

Meredith is a graduate of Keele University, which is based just outside the Staffordshire town.

At the PPA he has worked on issues including press regulation, advertising, copyright and VAT issues, having written for Campaign on the latter. 

The PPA's 220 members include Campaign and PRWeek publisher Haymarket, Bauer Media Group, BBC Magazines, The Economist Group and UBM.

Writing on the PPA website earlier this month, Meredith said: "The debate for the next six weeks will be about what kind of Brexit the British public are ready to accept, and you can expect a lot more talk about ‘hard’ or ‘soft’ Brexit." 

Click for Campaign sister title PRWeek’s roundup of PR and public affairs professionals set to contest the general election.  

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