A 32-year-old business adviser and rugby referee has been selected to replace Todd Barclay in the safe National seat of Clutha-Southland.

Hamish Walker was selected by local members last night.

Walker was born in Dunedin, and has previously worked as a consultant at an accountancy firm, in banking and has run his own property management company in Auckland.

Other experience includes working as a fisherman, a police jailer and a gold miner. Walker has also been a first class rugby referee and sits on the Otago Rugby Board.


Walker stood for National in Dunedin South in 2014, losing to Labour MP Clare Curran by 3858 votes.

Barclay announced on June 21 he would not seek re-election as Clutha-Southland MP in September's election.

That decision came after a bombshell admission from Prime Minister Bill English that Barclay had told him he had recordings of his former electorate office staff member Glenys Dickson, which were made when a dictaphone was left running in the office.

Dickson worked for English for years. After English opted to become a list MP Barclay became Clutha-Southland MP and fell out with Dickson.

Police have re-opened an investigation into allegations Barclay secretly recorded the conversations of Dickson.

English has continued to face questions over his involvement, including why he sent hundreds of text messages to Dickson during the employment dispute.