POLITICS has been a long-time interest of mine.

I’m proud to say my father campaigned against fluoridation in Andover and the changes brought about by London ‘overspill’

A person would have to be highly sedated to not be aware of the whole episode of Brexit and the mess going on in Westminster. It’s been stated by many prominent people that our democracy is under threat and you cannot feel there’s something wrong with our whole system of how we choose people to govern our nation but also how we hold them to account. Many would argue that there’s nothing wrong with the system, just those inhabiting it. I reject that because we’ve been betrayed by our political class since we joined the EEC in 1973. We’ve had many elections and different people since then.

Looking at democracy from the bottom level, we have our representative in parliament. We choose this person to represent our interests, but they are also effectively part of an electoral college who chooses our prime minister. Historically this person was sent from our town to London. One of our own. That isn’t the case anymore in many constituencies and in Andover’ example, hasn’t been for some time.

I’ve gone back through our MPs, even before we were joined with Basingstoke, before the 1970s. I believe I’m correct saying that it has been something like a century or more since we last had an MP who actually came from North or North-West Hampshire.

Case in point, we have Kit Malthouse. Born in Liverpool, educated in the same and Newcastle. Mr Malthouse has no connection with North-West Hampshire to my knowledge. Other than being an Englishman, he has no affinity with the people of Andover and surrounding area. Of course, he has moved here to offer us the fig leaf of legitimacy for being our representative but had no idea of the culture of our town and our part of the country prior. He is of course a career politician with ambitions of premiership. To Mr Malthouse, being MP for us is a job and stepping-stone for his ambition.

I believe he insults us. I believe the local Conservative party association insults us and being fair, any other party who stands for election [with] someone with no connection with us does too. Our political class, from bottom to top, insults us. North West Hampshire has an electorate of 77,000.The message is no-one here is fit to represent us.

I’m sure we have a local business person, lawyer or similar person of standing who can represent us. That person can betray us just the same as any other, wherever they come from. However, I’d hope that person had roots here and affinity with the people of North West Hampshire. Someone who isn’t a member of the political class sent to Andover, more the other way around.

Being an MP is a service, not a job. Politics has become top-down, if it was ever any other way.

Stuart Noyes, Vigo Road, Andover