The Conservative candidate for Norwich North has resigned just three weeks after being selected. 

Nick Rose has attracted criticism in recent weeks over his controversial language around climate change, transgender people and immigration. 

“I am today resigning as the Conservative Parliamentary candidate for Norwich North," he told this newspaper.

"I appreciate the opportunity to have participated in the political process and wish the party success in the upcoming election.”

Norwich Evening News: Nick Rose has stood down as the Tory candidate for Norwich North Nick Rose has stood down as the Tory candidate for Norwich North (Image: Nick Rose)


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Mr Rose has attracted plenty of controversy in his short time as a candidate. 

The 54-year-old army veteran from Buckinghamshire faced calls to stand down just hours after being selected over his denial of man-made climate change.

He then was forced to delete a social media post in which he labelled people "idle benefit scroungers". 

Most recently, Mr Rose received an official complaint from Thorpe St Andrew School over "incendiary" comments he made during a Question Time-style event with sixth-form students.

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In a discussion about transgender issues, he was asked about whether transwomen should be allowed in female prisons and comments made by Suella Braverman, the former home secretary, in which she said: "Transwomen have no place in women’s [hospital] wards or indeed any safe space relating to biological women."

The candidate told the Thorpe audience: "A bloke wearing a dress who identifies as a woman should not be in a woman's prison and should not be allowed in women's toilets.

"How on earth can all of you ladies here allow a bloke in a skirt into your loos? It's disgusting."

When asked about other remarks made by Ms Braverman - in which she described the arrival of immigrants in small boats across the Channel as an "invasion on our southern coast" - Mr Rose said: "We've got too many illegal migrants coming in. It is an invasion. We are being invaded."

Norwich Evening News: Mr Rose's now-deleted tweetMr Rose's now-deleted tweet (Image: Newsquest)

A spokesman for the Norwich Conservatives said on the incident: “We are aware of reports of comments attributed to Nick Rose during a hustings at Thorpe St Andrew School and Sixth Form.

"The matter is under investigation. Norwich North Conservative associations firmly condemns all forms of hatred."

The resignation leaves the seat empty ahead of next year's general election - with current Norwich North MP Chloe Smith due to stand down. 

Alice MacDonald has been campaigning for Labour in the constituency since July 2022 and is looking to overhaul the 4,738 majority that Ms Smith earned at the 2019 election.

Ms Smith has held the seat since a 2009 by-election, ending 12 years of Ian Gibson holding the seat for Labour.

The Greens have announced Ben Price, who is city and county councillor for Thorpe Hamlet, as their candidate but the party only attracted 2.3pc of votes in 2019, behind the Lib Dems (5.8pc).

The battle for the seat is seen as largely between Labour (40.3pc in 2019) and the Tories (50.5pc) as just 507 votes separated them in the 2017 election.