MARTIN Tod plans to stand for public office again, two years after coming up short in his bid to be Winchester’s MP.

He lost by 3,000 votes to Conservative candidate Steve Brine, but now hopes to make a comeback.

Mr Tod has confirmed that he is due to be Lib Dem candidate for St Paul’s ward in the next local elections.

The seat, which covers Fulflood and Oram’s Arbour, is currently occupied by long-standing Lib Dem city councillor Ray Love. He is understood to be stepping down.

It will be the first time that Mr Tod has stood for Winchester City Council.

He acted as a paper candidate for the Lib Dems while living in London a decade ago, but has not served on a local authority before.

For that reason, he told the Chronicle that he was not immediately targeting a shadow cabinet role if elected.

He said: “My focus would be to be a good ward member and there are a lot of other councillors who have much more experience than me.”

When asked if standing for the council might be a first step in running for Westminster again, he said it was too early to say.

He said: “We don’t know what the parliamentary boundaries will be because the Boundary Commission is still working on them.

“Also, the decision on who the Liberal Democrat candidate should be will be decided by local party members.”

He added: “It’s always been my aim to stay in Winchester. It’s a great place to live and I really, really love the place.”

Since losing the 2010 election, Mr Tod, who lives at Weeke Manor in Weeke, has worked for the charity, Shelter.

A full list of candidates for St Paul’s ward is expected to be made public within the next few days.

The local elections will be held on Thursday, May 3.