Labour wins Whitefoot from Lib-Dems
Friday 12th October 2012
Mark Ingleby is the new Labour councillor for Whitefoot Ward.
He polled 924 votes, Janet Hurst, Lib-Dem got 646, Simon Nundy, Tory, 258, John Hamilton, LPBP, 241, Paul Oakley, UKIP, 100 and Ute Michel, Green (but who did no campaigning) 36 votes.
The Lib-Dems ran a very vigorous campaign to retain the seat and Janet is a well known activist who lives in the ward, but the national role of her party, propping up the Tories and allowing them to wreck the NHS and attack public services has led to a many voters turning away to other parties.
Labour's win gives them 41 councillors as the leader of the Tory group, David Britton, defected to Labour a couple of weeks ago.
People Before Profit's share of the vote was 10.9%, up from 4.4% in the GLA election in May 2012 and 3.2% in 2010.
We ran an active campaign and will be thanking voters through a publicity campaign of posters and personal letters over the coming week.
Meet John Hamilton
This short video was hastily filmed on Tuesday morning and finishes with three clips of John meeting local residents before the election campaign started. Apologies for the low sound level in these clips.
Labour ducks out of hustings meeting:
A couple of dozen people came to the Goldsmiths Community Centre on Tuesday evening to question the candidates. John Hamilton of LPBP was joined by Simon Nundy (Conservative), Janet Hurst (Lib-Dem) and Paul Oakley (UKIP) for an interesting debate chaired by Paul Moore, Secretary of Lewisham Trades Council. No-one from the Labour Party was there to put their point of view - their candidate, Mark Ingleby, had already said he was working that night.
All the candidates saw the need for a more vocal opposition to Steve Bullock in the council chamber and Paul Oakley actually recommended voters to vote for John Hamilton if they wanted a change from Labour - something we can endorse!
Simon Nundy still maintains that he is the main opposition to Labour, as does Janet Hurst, who admittted to only having a parochial interest in the local matters.
Our conversations on doorsteps and elsewhere in the area show a high level of recognition that only Lewisham People Before Profit offers real opposition to Labour dominance in the Town Hall and to the Con-Dem coalition in Whitehall, and John Hamilton said that his next target was to win the position of Mayor of Lewisham in 2014 by working with others opposed to the Executive Mayoral system so that we can stop the privatisation agenda and the waste of money on consultants and overpaid council officers who have proved to be incompetent time and again.
Cumberland Place footpath:
One of John's suggestions is creating a footpath from Cumberland Place, a new housing development on the old railway sidings, to enable people to get to Downham and Grove Park without having to travel a mile and a half. John explains it here in a short video.
John Hamilton's Election Address
Monday 24th September 2012
The election address for the Whitefoot by-election is now printed and is being distributed to the homes in the area.
We are starting with the postal voters, who will be getting their ballot papers on Saturday 29th, but if you'd like your copy now, just click here to download it to your computer:
There is also a Sorry You Were Out card with a humorous "Easy Voting Guide" on the back. You can download it here:
If you would like to help us delivering these or would like a poster for your window, send an email to the same address.
For a map of Whitefoot Ward click here: Whitefoot Map
Bye-Election in Whitefoot Ward
Thursday 13th September 2012
There will be a bye-election in Whitefoot on October 11th caused by the resignation of Pete Pattisson, a Liberal Democrat councillor for many years who is taking up a teaching job in India.
Following a public meeting on Tuesday 11th September at Goldsmiths Community Centre, in the centre of the Ward, John Hamilton was selected to contest the election.
Speaking after the decision John said:
"I hope to be able to represent the people of Whitefoot in Lewisham Council, but also be a voice for all those residents who want someone to stand up for them in the council chamber against the Mayor's policies of privatisation and cuts in public services. The time is right for a breath of fresh air in Lewisham's political arena - so long dominated by Labour"
Local resident Jim Gallagher and former Socialist Party Councillor, Chris Flood had both expressed an interest in becoming the candidate, but Jim decided to withdraw feeling that he needed to have a bit more experience before standing for the Council. John, who had been distributing literature in the ward over the previous three days, felt that there was a strong understanding among local people of the good work LPBP had been doing on the housing issue and campaigning against council cuts, and that therefore he would like to stand to ensure that LPBP could build up a strong presence in the South of the borough.
Chris Flood said he would like to stand as a joint candidate for the Socialist Party and LPBP, under the joint name: Socialist Alternative - Lewisham People Before Profit.
During the questioning of candidates it became clear that both contenders would make excellent councillors, with Chris stressing the need to build links with the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (see links to the right) which is hoping to become an alternative working class party to the Labour Party, and John wishing to broaden the appeal of Lewisham People Before Profit to also include people who don't consider themselves socialists but who want public services to be run for the people and not for profit.
The final vote was very close and John was congratulated by Chris. Now we go forward together to do our best to elect LPBP's first councillor and build a stronger presence for Lewisham People Before Profit in SE6.