UK Politics

Emily Benn, Tony Benn's granddaughter, bids to become MP

Emily Benn Image copyright PA

The grand-daughter of the late Labour stalwart Tony Benn is to make a fresh attempt to become the fifth generation of her family to sit in the Commons.

Emily Benn, 24, has been selected to stand in next year's general election for Labour in Croydon South.

She was elected as a councillor in Croydon this year but will need to overturn a 15,818 Tory majority to join her uncle Hilary Benn in the Commons.

In 2010 she unsuccessfully contested the East Worthing and Shoreham seat.

Ms Benn's father, Stephen, is Tony Benn's eldest son. Her great-grandfather William Wedgwood Benn and her great-great-grandfathers, Sir John Williams Benn and Daniel Homes, were also MPs .

Sir Richard Ottaway, who is standing down next year, won Croydon South in 2010, with Labour coming third behind the Liberal Democrats.

Ms Benn said she was "delighted and honoured" to have been selected.

"It's obviously a challenge for Labour, but I firmly believe that there should be no 'no-go' areas."

She said it was "insulting" to suggest the local party selected her because of her famous surname or that there was extra pressure.

"The pressure and responsibility comes from the people who voted for me as their candidate and from Labour supporters," she added.

In the Commons last month, Prime Minister David Cameron referred to the fact that Will Straw, son of former Labour Home Secretary Jack Straw, and Stephen Kinnock, ex-party leader Lord Kinnock's son, were also seeking election in 2010.

He described Labour's political dynasties as the "same families with the same message".

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