Select Committee on Standards and Privileges Written Evidence

36.  Written statement by Mrs Lesley Finlayson, 15 October 2003

My name is Mrs Lesley Anne Finlayson. I am a Conservative Party member and a local Councillor for Hale End and Highams Park Ward in the London Borough of Waltham Forest.

I have known Iain and Betsy Duncan Smith since Iain was selected to fight the 1992 general election.

Due to Iain and myself representing the same constituents we occasionally had reason to work together. One such occasion was prior to the local elections in 2002. I was dealing with a nasty case of bullying at a local school.

My constituent had made an appointment to see Iain at his Friday surgery and wanted me to be with her. I rang his office to speak to Annabelle Eyre who used to run his office to update Iain on the latest events. Betsy answered the phone. We chatted about our two daughters who are the same age. When Iain and Betsy are in the constituency, the two girls play together. We chatted about Betsy running Iain's appointments, we laughed about Betsy being able to tie and slow Iain down.

On another occasion, Betsy rang me on a Thursday and apologised for the late notice but Iain was going to be in the constituency the next day on a walk about and could I be there to support him.

As far as I was aware Betsy was working for her husband organising his appointments.

15 October 2003

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