Eddie Hughes MP, Conservative MP for Walsall North, had been selected to fight the seat of Tamworth as the Conservative PPC for the next General Election, owing to the abolition of his seat. However, when the resignation of Chris Pincher MP triggered a by-election in Tamworth, Mr Hughes MP said publicly he would not stand at the by-election. C was instead selected as the Conservative candidate for the by-election. Mr Hughes MP then said publicly he would not run in Tamworth at the General Election if C was elected at the by-election.
Ds (supporters of the Labour Party) had published, during a by-election campaign for Tamworth, an advert on Facebook intending to affect the prospects of C, the Conservative candidate at that by-election. That advert alluded to “the Conservatives’ Dodgy Deals”, and implied that Mr Hughes and C had done a ‘deal’ whereby C would run in the by-election, but not at the General Election, allowing Mr Hughes to run in Tamworth and C to collect the £29,000 paid to retiring MPs.
C brought a Part 8 claim for an injunction under s.106(3) Representation of the People Act, to prohibit Ds from publishing a false statement of fact about his personal character until the end of the by-election. Both C and Hughes filed affadavits swearing there had been no such deal between them, or any sort of deal at all.
In correspondence after the injunction hearing was listed, the Labour Party (an unincorporated association, which was not itself a party to the action) offered contractual undertakings not to re-publish the specific advert or reference to ‘dodgy deals’, but refused to give any undertaking to the Court and/or undertakings from Ds personally and/or an undertaking not to publish ‘similar statements’.