Angela Eagle scraps open surgeries after police security warning

Posted On: 
21st July 2016

Angela Eagle today scrapped open constituency surgeries after police warned her safety was at risk.

Angela Eagle at the launch of her short-lived leadership campaign
PA Images

The former Labour leadership candidate cancelled the weekly advice meeting she was due to have tomorrow.

From next week, the surgeries will become appointment-only rather than being held on a first-come-first-served basis.

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It follows the suspension by Labour bosses of her local party branch in Wallasey, Merseyside, over claims of intimidation, threats and bullying against the MP and her staff.

A man has also been arrested after Ms Eagle allegedly received death threats.

Detective Chief Inspector Sarah Kenwright told the Huffington Post: “We have given Ms Eagle advice about her surgeries, at her request, but the decision to cancel surgeries is not a police matter and would lie entirely with them."

A source close to Ms Eagle said the killing last month of Labour MP Jo Cox outside an advice surgery meant police had changed the "risk profile" for MPs.

"Advice was received from Merseyside Police and said that because there has been a shift in both the tolerance of risk, plus the threats against her, she might be safer if she switched to appointment-only rather than open surgeries," said the source.

"Angela has therefore cancelled tomorrow's surgery and in the future they will be appointment-only."

Police launched an investigation last week after a brick was thrown through a window at Ms Eagle's constituency office.

At the time, Jeremy Corbyn said: "As someone who has also received death threats this week and previously, I am calling on all Labour party members and supporters to act with calm and treat each other with respect and dignity, even where there is disagreement.

“I utterly condemn any violence or threats, which undermine the democracy within our party and have no place in our politics.”

Ms Eagle pulled out of the leadership race earlier this week after her rival, Owen Smith, received more nominations from MPs.