Six-time loser Gunter is Tories’ choice for Norbury by-election

Tirena Gunter was selected last night by Croydon Conservatives as their candidate in the Norbury and Pollards Hill by-election being held on March 14.

Tirena Gunter: has volunteered to lose another election for the Tories

The by-election has been called following the death last month of long-standing Labour councillor Maggie Mansell.

Labour is staging its selection meeting tonight.

Gunter, who lives in Norbury, is the Tories’ go-to candidate for elections in the north of the borough. This will be her seventh time as a candidate, having lost on the previous six occasions.

Two of Gunter’s previous campaigns have been in Norbury, in 2006 and 2014. She stood in South Norwood in last year’s Town Hall elections, in Selhurst in its by-election in 2015, and before that she had been a candidate in Upper Norwood in 2002 and 2010.

The last time Gunter contested Norbury ward, five years ago, she polled 1,045 votes, 25 per cent of the vote, making her the leading Conservative candidate, but still with less than half of the number votes for the Labour candidates who were elected, including the late Maggie Mansell.

It has been suggested by sources close to Croydon Tories that Gunter may have been selected this time from a very short shortlist, of one.

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Downing Street orders checks on Barwell’s Croydon cronies

Our political editor WALTER CRONXITE on a report which suggest that the mates of the Prime Minister’s chief of staff are being put under pressure

Jason Cummings and Gavin Barwell, before one got the other one a job in Downing Street

Helen MacNamara, the head of ethics at the Cabinet Office, has written to every government Special Advisor working in Downing Street asking them to submit their Curriculum Vitae.

Steven Swinford, the deputy political editor of the Daily Torygraph, tweeted about this last night, taking a bit of a leap to suggest that it is the latest move by Theresa Mayhem’s government to get ready for a post-Brexit General Election.

“It’s being presented as an HR exercise to address issues around conditions and pay,” Swinford notes.

“But SPADs fear something else is going on.

“Is government gearing up for another election?” Swinford asked.

Our mole in Portcullis House suggests that there is another very good reason, however. Continue reading

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Fears for mall increase as Hammerson takes a hammering

Our retailing correspondent, MT WALLETTE, on how the plunging share price for half of the so-called ‘Croydon Partnership’ could see the redevelopment of the town centre postponed … permanently

Hammerson operate the Bullring centre in Birmingham. Their shares are now in a bear market on the stock exchange

The stock market is becoming increasingly nervous about the valuation of one of the major players in the long-promised regeneration of Croydon town centre, to the extent that there is a growing fear that one half of the “Croydon Partnership” could be forced to pull the plug on the £1.4billion project.

Much of the focus on the redevelopment of the increasingly dilapidated Whitgift Centre has so far been on developer Westfield and their plans for the supermall, which was first revealed in 2012 but is now running at least six years late on its original 2017 completion date.

However, it is the falling share price of Hammerson, the mall operators who own Centrale and who are the other half of the Croydon Partnership, where the biggest worries for the future of the “Hammersfield” project now lie.

This ought to be of growing concern to Jo “We’re Not Stupid” Negrini, the council chief executive, and council leader Tony Newman, who between them have invested so much council time, and money, on the wet dream that is Hammersfield, but who now risk the Town Hall being left with nothing to show for the extravagant scheme. Continue reading

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Messiah, East Surrey Choral Society, Coulsdon, Apr 13

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Palace For Life Foundation football talent day, Apr 20

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Friends of Lloyd Park guided history walk, Feb 17

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South London Sinfonia Sweet Harmony, Addiscombe, Mar 9

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