Chris Philp: I will campaign against Coulsdon rail service cuts

CHRIS PHILP, the Conservative parliamentary candidate for Croydon South, responds to our report on rail services in Coulsdon

Chris Philp: says it is unfair to accuse him of behaving like a politician

Chris Philp: says it is unfair to accuse him of behaving like a politician

A few days ago, Jon Bigger – my Class War anarchist opponent in the upcoming general election in Croydon South – posted a piece on Inside Croydon making some completely untrue allegations.

He accused me of inventing a problem which didn’t exist in order to then try to solve it.

The issue concerned the planned reduction in off-peak Victoria trains from Coulsdon stations. Bigger quoted at length a press release from the train operator. The press release talks about the total number of trains stopping at Coulsdon South, the peak trains stopping there, and the off-peak service to central London (not distinguishing between different London stations).

It talks about everything except what is actually proposed – that off-peak Victoria services from Coulsdon are going to be reduced.

But don’t take my word for it. The East Surrey Transport Committee and four local residents’ groups have shown there is a reduction to off-peak Victoria services after detailed analysis of the proposed timetable.

Bigger has swallowed the train operator’s press release without bothering to read it carefully or do detailed research – I would have thought an anarchist would treat official PR with more scepticism!

Bigger then besmirched my character by accusing me of making something up, when actually I have the detailed facts.

Bigger’s second allegation was that it is somehow not appropriate for a parliamentary candidate to get involved in campaigning on local issues, and that anyone who does so is making an assumption they will win. This is all patently nonsense.

Any concerned member of the public – whether a candidate for public office or not – is entitled to campaign on important issues and in fact should be encouraged to do so.

There is a consultation this autumn on the new timetable and I will be actively trying to make sure that Croydon gets the best possible service. I urge others (including Bigger) to do the same.

Helping improve Croydon is something that we should all be working towards, whether elected or not. I am not making any presumption about the coming election, I am just energetically working to help the local community. Perhaps Bigger might dedicate his efforts to doing the same?

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3 Responses to Chris Philp: I will campaign against Coulsdon rail service cuts

  1. davidcallam says:

    Whoops! I’m confused. I thought Messrs Bigger and Philp were members of the same party and had been for some time.

    On the wider point, trains routed through London Bridge and possibly going as far as Peterborough, with connection to Yorkshire and eastern Scotland are surely an improvement in service compared with trains to London Victoria, particularly when a quick change at East Croydon will give passengers access to many more Victoria services.

    Philp seems testy that anyone has dared to question his motives: as arrogant as Ottaway, he will fit well with all the other Westminster egotists.

  2. Mark Lees says:

    It is a non-issue, Philp.

    The journey is perfectly manageable travelling to East Croydon to change and it makes little bearing on the length of the journey and no difference to the cost. The capacity of the station will remain broadly similar but more trains will be running to other locations – something which will be beneficial for anybody not making an off-peak journey to central London.

    It is exactly the kind of non-issue that you can campaign on to increase your public profile without actually doing anything useful or beneficial.

  3. Nick Davies says:

    Please can someone tell us which off peak services from Coulsdon South or Town to Victoria are to change, then maybe we could have something useful to say about it.

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