WALTER CRONXITE, our political editor, on the knock-back to a Tory councillor that could prove to be terminal to his huge political ambition
Mario Creatura, the former parliamentary gobby factotum to Gavin Barwell, has been thwarted again in his desperate ambition to become an MP.
The Coulsdon Town councillor literally bet the house, his house, in an attempt to be selected as the parliamentary candidate for the ubersafe Tory seat of Reigate and Banstead.
But as Inside Croydon can reveal exclusively, Creatura’s one-man campaign of fawning and scraping to ingratiate himself with the members of the local Conservative Association in the Surrey stockbroker belt has all come to nothing.
In fact, in a humiliating rejection, Creatura did not even make the short-list of four ahead of today’s special selection meeting, where Reigate councillor Rebecca Paul was handed the plum task of inheriting the retiring MP Crispin Blunt’s 18,000 majority.
Oh, how Creatura craved such a potentially life-long sinecure to satisfy his personal ambitions.
But after he made such a lash-up of trying to win back his former boss’s old seat of Croydon Central in 2019 – when Sarah Jones increased her majority, after Creatura had done a nasty little deal with the SPAC Nation cult church – it seems that the sometime Downing Street SPAD is regarded as politically toxic in Surrey as well as south London.
Ever since May 2022, when Blunt announced his retirement from Parliament, Creatura has been “on manoeuvres”, setting up a self-promotion website underlining what he perceives to be his skills, abilities and talents. The site is full of self-regarding selfies of Creatura on the very nicely swept streets of Reigate, and Banstead, delivering various leaflets in the Conservative cause.
After making so much of his absolute dedication to Croydon when seeking people’s votes in 2019, Creatura has spent the past year pledging his absolute dedication to Reigate. And Banstead.
So much so that he even sold up his £700,000 home in Addiscombe and bought a house in Banstead, demonstrating his firm commitment to his quest.
And all for… nothing.
It also now creates a bit of a problem once the Tory selections in Croydon for councillor candidates, or even mayoral candidates, for 2026 come round.
Because as things stand now, Creatura has disqualified himself from standing for election in Croydon, as he has neither a home in the borough, nor owns a business here.
Jason Perry, the leader of the Tories on Croydon Council, clearly doesn’t rate Creatura very highly, having sacked him from a council shadow cabinet position to the less-demanding task of Tory chief whip…
Colleagues at the Town Hall suggested that Creatura wasn’t even up to that job. “Mario is ‘WINO’,” one confided to Inside Croydon earlier this year. “Whip In Name Only. Given he’s never here.”
It all means that for the hard-pressed residents of Coulsdon Town, there could be an intriguing couple of years ahead, as their councillor from Banstead comes to terms with what could be a terminal change of fortune in his political career.
Inside Croydon did contact erstwhile parliamentary candidate Creatura for a comment on his plight. He did not respond.
Read more: Creatura AWOL from cabinet as wannabe MP goes partying
Read more: Finally, Coulsdon’s Tory councillor Creatura cuts before he runs
Read more: Creatura hands Edwards front-row seat for Fairfield by-election
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