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Labour's campaign for Croydon North off to a strange start
23/10/2012 13:22:00


Labour’s campaign for the Croydon North by-election got off to a strange start yesterday when Shadow Justice Secretary Sadiq Khan visited the constituency and told The Croydon Advertiser, “I don't think it will matter to people where the candidate comes from, even if they aren't from Croydon.”

That’s certainly not the feedback that we’ve been getting on the doorsteps in Croydon North. One of the reasons people rated Malcolm Wicks so highly was that he lived in Croydon and was part of the community.

Nor is it my own experience. The fact that I have lived in Croydon all my life is a big advantage when it comes to doing the job. Of course it’s not essential for a Parliamentary candidate to be local - they can move in to the area and get to know it over time - but surely it’s desirable that they have a strong local connection?

Our candidate Andy Stranack certainly has that. He was born in Mayday Hospital, is a member of the West Croydon Community Forum that is trying to regenerate the area after last year’s riots and wrote the Lottery bid that secured millions of pounds to help rebuild Thornton Heath Leisure Centre.

If senior Labour figures think that they can parachute in an outside candidate, that suggests that they are taking the people of Croydon North for granted.

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Readers' Comments

On 23/10/2012 17:24:00 Jim wrote:
He survived Maydie Hospital? He deserves votes just for that!
On 23/10/2012 21:52:00 Adam Kellett wrote:
If Labour are getting the parachutes ready it may be more a reflection on the quality of their local candidates. To be fair though, anyone would struggle to match the stature of Malcolm Wicks.

I was very pleased to see that the Croydon North Conservatives were free to choose without interference from above and they have indeed chosen wisely. Whoever Labour choose I am sure Andy will give them a good run for their money.

On 23/10/2012 22:29:00 Al wrote:
So, I assume this means that the Conservatives are taking the people of Croydon South for granted, in your view?
On 25/10/2012 17:49:00 Gavin wrote:

No, I specifically said "it's not essential for a Parliamentary candidate to be local - they can move in to the area and get to know it over time". Richard has been the MP for Croydon South for over 20 years so he knows his patch pretty well. My argument was that being local is surely desirable.

As regards "taking people for granted", that would only be the case if the national Labour Party tried to parachute in an outside candidate. The long list has now been published and they haven't done that - they've included two local candidates on the list of five.

Labour would only be taking the area for granted if they didn't offer their local members some local candidates. The long list




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Gavin Barwell, House of Commons, SW1A 1AA, Tel  020 8660 0491      © Gavin Barwell  2017       Promoted by Ian Parker on behalf of Gavin Barwell, both at 36 Brighton Road, Purley, CR8 2LG