Tory supporter’s racist tweet Piles on Barwell’s campaign pain

Anne Piles, front left, "Backing Barwell" at the start of the election campaign with Croydon's three Tory parliamentary candidates - Vidhi Mohan (North), Barwell and Chris Philp (South)

Anne Piles, front left, “Backing Barwell” at the start of the election campaign with Croydon’s three Tory parliamentary candidates – Vidhi Mohan (North), Barwell and Chris Philp (South)

With each passing day, it becomes ever more clear that Croydon’s Tories will accept the support of anyone, regardless of their attitudes towards employment law, or their blatant racism.

On Thursday, Inside Croydon reported how Gavin Barwell, the erstwhile MP for Croydon Central, in his latest gaffe, had resorted to including an endorsement from a businesswoman who had been fined £35,000 for failing to pay her employees the legal minimum wage.

In front of an audience of business people from across the whole of Croydon on Friday, Barwell had an opportunity to try to distance himself from the conduct of the businesswoman, Neelofar Khan.

It is telling that Barwell chose not to do so. Khan was in the audience with Croydon FSB – Federation of Small Businesses – members.

Yesterday, pictured out knocking on doors for Barwell’s campaign was the now rarely seen former leader of Croydon Conservatives, Mike Fisher, who has carried the tag #WadGate since he was caught paying himself an extra £10,000-plus in councillor expenses without bothering to mention it to his ward residents.

And here we have something else which could make Barwell squirm with discomfort.

It is a tweet from the prominent Selsdon Tory, Anne Piles, notoriously locally as a regular and apparently welcomed correspondent with the Redhill-based Sadvertiser.

Her views about the traveller community, aired on social media, may shock many reasonably minded people:

The tweet from Anne Piles to her husband last year. Classy, eh?

The tweet from Anne Piles to her husband last year. Classy, eh?

As far as we’re aware, Croydon Conservatives have never sought to take any action over Piles and such comments made on her closely controlled Twitter account.

But then Barwell’s campaign is in such disarray, he must need all the help he can get, even from someone who makes such a prejudiced comment.

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News, views and analysis about the people of Croydon, their lives and political times in the diverse and most-populated borough in London. Based in Croydon and edited by Steven Downes. To contact us, please email
This entry was posted in 2015 General Election, Chris Philp MP, Croydon Central, Croydon North, Croydon South, Gavin Barwell, Mike Fisher, Selsdon & Ballards, Vidhi Mohan and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to Tory supporter’s racist tweet Piles on Barwell’s campaign pain

  1. Nick Davies says:

    The Croham Clux Clan strikes again?

    • pbell2754 says:

      I thought she came from Selsdon – says so above.

      Anyway, I live in Croham. It is a pleasant enough place, without people like her (well i haven’t seen them).

      Down here in the bottom of the valley we all seem to muddle along like British people tend to do whatever our familial/ancestral backgrounds. So please do not tarnish the good name of us Croham folk with weird Tories and their strange behaviour.

      Now Selsdon on the other hand, well who’s to say?

    • derekthrower says:

      Reckon Selsdon Staffel would have been more appropriate.

  2. FSB = Fox sake Barwell?

  3. Mrs Piles is much more than a mere Tory “supporter” but a high-ranking (not just in an olfactory sense) official in Croydon Conservatives.

    A Google search for Anne Giles Croydon Conservatives reveals her Twitter bio to include “Member of the Executive Committee of the Conservative Party”. She was on the committee that selected Chris Philp to be the candidate for this election:

  4. Andrew Leng says:

    Perhaps someone who is going along to one of the election hustings could ask Gavin Barwell a few direct questions;

    1. Will he disassociate himself from Anne Giles and her racist comment and will he ban her from his re-election campaign for holding such abhorrent views?

    2. Will he disassociate himself from his supporter Neelofar Khan, the business woman who exploited one of her workers by not paying them the minimum wage? The employee was forced to work at least 40 hours a week in a fast food kiosk in Waterloo and was paid just £600 in two months. Ms Khan then spitefully reported the chef to the UK Border Agency, when he threatened to sue her. The allegations made by Ms Khan were totally baseless. Or does Mr Barwell condone such practices? After all he claims to be on the side of “hard working people”.

    3. Will Mr Barwell explain why he is putting out a campaign leaflet which will look to some residents of Croydon like an official council circular (the font/colour scheme and design does look similar to council leaflets sent out in the past)?
    The leaflet “Not sure who to vote for?” does not mention that it is a Barwell/Tory campaign leaflet, there is no indication of who financed/ printed it (Croydon Conservatives? – who knows) and it doesn’t even feature a Tory party logo. On the face of it, it look like a deliberate attempt to confuse and mislead people. It’s dishonest and tries to present biased views as “facts”. It annoyed me when I read it.

    With Qs 1 & 2, if Mr Barwell is not prepared to come out and disown/condemn the actions of both supporters, what does that tell us about the man himself and the views and values that he holds?

    As for Q3 – it suggests to me that Mr Barwell will try and do anything to get re-elected, even if it involves hoodwinking the very residents he claims he is proud to serve. To me it shows contempt for the electorate and should tell voters all they need to know about the Tory candidate for Croydon Central.

  5. Duona says:

    I will certainly undertake to ask question one …Gavin talks of diversity, but in practice, votes against the Equalities Act.

    It’s time to find out if these senior Tory activists and their abhorrent views are why Croydon Tories don’t care about the minority or BAME vote and make little effort to hide it.

    Even Anne Giles must know what she says on Twitter is in the public domain, protected tweets or not.

  6. “love for all hatred for none”

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