Ribble Valley MP Nigel Evans has said he would prefer Donald Trump to build golf courses in his constituency than for more houses to be built.
Speaking on Irish TV’s News Thing programme, Evans – who has made no secret of his admiration for President-elect Trump – was talking about the potential trade benefits of a Trump presidency when host Sam Delaney interjected to speculate that the main motivation for his enthusiasm for Trump was to have luxury golf courses built in his rural constituency.
Evans’ response was not to criticise Trump’s resorts but to launch an attack on recent housing developments in the area.
He said: “I tell you what, we’ve got a lot of green space there – I’d rather those got turned into golf courses than some of the housing estates that keep being put up there”
A taken-aback Delaney then asked if this statement was timely given the current housing crisis, but Evans was unmoved.
“Not in the Ribble Valley we haven’t,” he said.
Pushed for clarification as to whether he really preferred the idea of Trump golf courses to new housing, Evans concluded: “Look we’ve got a couple of golf courses there, but we’ve got massive new housing going in all over the place and people are fed up… Spread the housing around it doesn’t all need to be in the Ribble Valley.”
The Ribble Valley is one most expensive and least densely populated parts of Lancashire.
Earlier this week a photograph of Mr Evans with the President-elect went viral on social media.
The picture was taken in 2012 at the Mar-a-Lago Club in Florida.
At the Florida meeting, Mr Evans and two others had dinner with Trump where they discussed UK-US relations, the state of politics, and general world affairs.
Last week, Mr Evans also said he had written to Mr Trump to congratulate him on his election victory over Hilary Clinton and invited him visit the Ribble Valley to see first-hand the UK-US special relationship.
Speaking last week, Mr Evans said: “Regardless of what opinions we as individuals have about the President-elect, it must be accepted by all that Donald Trump will be the next President of the United States.”