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Gogglebox star to run as Labour candidate against Tory deputy prime minister Oliver Dowden

The 26-year-old featured on Gogglebox from 2013-2017  (Facebook)
The 26-year-old featured on Gogglebox from 2013-2017 (Facebook)

Former Gogglebox star Josh Tapper has been selected by Labour to run against deputy prime minister Oliver Dowden in the general election.

The 26-year-old, who featured on the Channel 4 show alongside father Jonathan, mother Nikki and sister Amy, has been confirmed as the candidate for Hertsmere, in Hertfordshire.

The Deputy Prime Minister has been the MP for Hertsmere since 2015, winning a 21,000 majority in the last general election.

Labour came in second in the constituency at the 2019 election, winning around 11,000 votes compared to Mr Dowden’s 32,000.

In a statement on X/Twitter, Mr Tapper said: "I’m thrilled and honoured to have been selected as Labour’s parliamentary candidate for Hertsmere.

“Thank you so much to local members for your support - I won’t let you down. The work to unseat the Deputy Prime Minister starts now!”

The Gogglebox Tapper Family: Josh, Nikki, Amy and Jonathan (Tim P. Whitby/Getty Images for B)
The Gogglebox Tapper Family: Josh, Nikki, Amy and Jonathan (Tim P. Whitby/Getty Images for B)

Mr Tapper left the Gogglebox in 2017 after landing a job in the civil service. He joined Labour when Sir Keir Starmer became leader, according to the Jewish News.

He previously stood for selection in 2022, but missed out on the nomination in the North London seat of Chipping Barnet.

Mr Tapper is not the first celebrity to be selected by Labour to stand in the election.

Dave Rowntree, the drummer for Blur, will stand for the Conservative-held Mid Sussex seat.

Deputy Prime Minister Oliver Dowden (PA Wire)
Deputy Prime Minister Oliver Dowden (PA Wire)

On Wednesday, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said his “working assumption” remains that a general election will take place in the second half of the year, but has not yet confirmed a date.

Downing Street sources have told The Independent that the election had been pencilled in for the second Thursday in October.

It is understood that the PM is unlikely to wait until mid-November, since it would clash with US presidential election.

No 10 dismissed the claim as “speculation” but did not deny the date. A government source said: “The PM will announce the date. Until then everything else is speculation.”

Mr Sunak has come under fire for refusing to name the date that the country can expect to take to the polls.

A Labour source told The Independent that the party was ready for any eventuality.

They said: “We remain ready for all scenarios. The public wants change and we’re ready to deliver it. Sunak needs to end the speculation and name the date.”