Tory candidate boasts of ‘new dwelling’ in constituency – however it’s an AirBnB itemizing

A Tory hopeful in Michael Gove’s seat has boasted of his permanent move to the constituency – in what appears to be an AirBnB.

Ed McGuinness posed with a set of keys at the front door to his new abode in Surrey Heath, where the candidate is vying to hold outgoing Mr Gove’s seat for the Tories. But his vow to the electorate didn’t quite go as planned when his new home was spotted on the rental site.

Ex-Army officer and Belfast native Mr McGuinness stood grinning in the kitchen of the property as he shared the life update with his followers. Posting to X, formerly Twitter, the candidate wrote: “Surrey Heath residents, rightly, expect their MP to be a part of their community.

“Well as of today I am now a resident of St Paul’s ward! As many of you will appreciate Michael Gove stepped down with a short timeframe to select me and it’s hard to get a place so quickly. I’ve said in previous messages my fiancé and I were moving in, and I’m sorry I couldn’t be more explicit on timeframes as I didn’t want to jinx it, but now I am so happy to live here and honoured to stand and represent our great residents!”

The AirBnB listing, which has since been taken down, described the guest-suite property as a “light and airy self-contained annex” with “ample off-road parking”. Pictures showed its open-plan kitchen and living space above the home. At the time of Mr McGuinness’s tweet it still appeared to be available to book on several days in July.

The Conservatives revealed earlier this week Afghanistan veteran and ex-JP Morgan banker Ed would be taking over from Gove, who was one of a mass exodus of senior Tories to announce they would be standing down at the election. Gove declared his departure in a three-page letter on X, in which he listed his top achievements in office.

Polls show Tories are in real danger of losing what has been a safe seat for decades. Surrey Heath is currently a toss-up, with the Lib Dems currently having a small edge as surveys project them to win on 36.2%. The Mirror has reached out to the Conservative Party for comment.