The Green Party today heaped more pressure on Labour councils in London – including Croydon – which have opted to sell-off large tracts of public property for private housing, while failing to deliver housing for social rent – or what used to be called council homes.
The Greens staged the launch of their local election campaign on the Central Hill Estate in Lambeth, which is under threat of “regeneration”, in a process which started when Steve Reed was council leader at Brixton Town Hall and one of the borough’s “regeneration practitioners” was Jo Negrini. Whatever became of them?
But whether the Greens present a real electoral threat in Croydon must be in some doubt: they will not be fielding a full slate of 70 candidates across the whole of the borough, something they managed to do in 2010 and 2014.
Expressing the ambition of having a Green on every council after the local elections on May 3, Jonathan Bartley, the party’s co-leader, called on the Government to “treat social housing with the value it deserves” and end the Thatcherite policy of Right to Buy, which has seen the number of social homes sold increase by more than 400 per cent since Conservative ministers revamped the rules in 2012.
Bartley, a south London resident, said in his speech, “Cosy, complacent councils like this one in Lambeth have forgotten the communities they are meant to serve. Greens know that houses and flats aren’t commodities, they are the homes where we build our lives, start families and make memories.
“Any community which puts a Green on their council chooses someone who values social housing and will fight to protect it. Greens will always work to give people a say in their futures – and stand with them to oppose the demolition of homes against their wishes.
“With the political will, we could work to repair social homes rather than demolish them and scatter communities across the country. It’s time, too, the Government treated social housing with the value it deserves and ended the Right to Buy scheme which has pushed stock to crisis point.
“Greens will always be a bold, brave voice standing up for local communities and challenging the status quo. One Green has the power to transform a community.”
The deadline for candidate nominations is 4pm tomorrow, and there is a possibility of some changes and additions, but according to information available today, the Green Party candidates in Croydon at the local elections are:
Addiscombe East: Tim Eveleigh, Bernice Golberg
Bensham Manor: Pravina Ellis, Raj Mehta, Varyl Thorndycraft
Coulsdon Town: Lucy Farndon, Jay Ginn, Leo Hopkins
Crystal Palace and Upper Norwood: Rachel Chance, Tom Chance, Mick O’Sullivan
Kenley: Ian Dixon, Kate Morris
New Addington North: David Beall
New Addington South: Martin Douglas
Norbury and Pollards Hill: Stephen Amor, Cheryl Zimmerman
Norbury Park: Graham Jones, Becca Weighell
Old Coulsdon: Alison Gillett, Jon Moles
Park Hill and Whitgift: James Cork
Purley and Woodcote: Wendy Harding, Simon Hargrave, Martyn Post
Purley Oaks and Riddlesdown: Simon Desorgher, Colette Ramuz
Sanderstead: Matt Bullock, Hannah Short
Selsdon and Addington Village: Catherine Shelley, Peter Underwood
Selsdon Vale and Forestdale: Bryony Bullock, Adrian Douglas
Shirley North: Frances Fearon, Chris Sciberras, Sam Small
Shirley South: Andy Bebington, Liz Bebington
South Croydon: Stephen Harris, Saima Raza, Marc Richards
Thornton Heath: Kirsty Bluck, Mark Lord, Matt Wilcock
Waddon: Nick Barnett, Andy Ellis, Grace Onions
West Thornton: Barry Buttigieg, Eileen Gale
Woodside: Chris Brann, Elaine Garrod
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