As normality slowly returns to London, 2021 will see the city face some of its biggest challenges since the war. At this critical point, the Marylebone Association thought it would be interesting to speak to candidates for London Mayor to find out a bit more about their motivations for standing and their key concerns for London over the next few years. The London Mayoral and Assembly Election is on Thursday May 6th. The MA has been trying to interview as many candidates as possible over the run-up to find out why they want to be Mayor of London and how their policies may affect us.
Shaun Bailey Conservative
What has brought you to this place? Personal experiences etc.
London needs a fresh start. I am a Londoner born and bred in West London and I was born in the old Paddington Hospital before it was knocked down to a single parent mother with my brother. My mother is an incredibly positive person and an inspiration. She taught me how to overcome adversity and that you are at your best when you serve others. I joined the army cadets, and I am an honorary Colonel for the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers. I did gymnastics for twenty-two years and it taught me the notion that small continuous improvement gives results and working on yourself. I was a team captain for a long time. I have links with Marylebone. I got married in the St Mary's church at Bryanston Square and my children went to St Mary's School, Bryanston Square. I lived in Marylebone for 15 years.
What are the biggest challenges ahead for London?
Rebuilding Relationships-Not being at school has been difficult for our children and our families and not seeing grandparents.
Rebuilding our city-London thrives on people and furlough has been brilliant. However, we need to get people back in safely. This will include cleaning the Tube, helping the hospitality industry giving them the space and tactics. We have lost 22million visitors. However, we the people will restart it and I am extremely optimistic. We have natural advantages, and we have strength of community, but we need strong leadership now. The pandemic has given us the opportunity to speak to all the people of the boroughs of London. I was a youth worker; I have been homeless, and I was unemployed. However, these experiences have taught me we can overcome anything. I want to give people opportunities.
What are your ambitions for London? Build back better?
I will make our streets safer; we will hire 8000. more police and reopen 38 police stations including west end central and Belgravia. With a new youth centre in every borough and 4000 new youth workers we will help young people to get out of gangs and into work. We will have a better transport network and clean up London’s air and we will reverse the 10% council tax hike. The only political party I care about is the party of London. I am not a hard party-political person. I believe London needs a Mayor with a strong voice and presence. I want to see people move forward and be safe. What is happening on the streets between crime and housing is letting London down.
London needs a fresh start. If you live in a place like Marylebone which effectively is circled by some of the busiest roads in Europe, they need to be moving and that is what makes a difference to your community.
If you were Mayor for one day what would you do?
On day one, I will make London Safer, I will let people own their own homes, make London a much cleaner, greener place. My life has been anchored by strong women, my mother, my wife and my 14-year-old daughter and I would love to invite my mother to City Hall!
Luisa Porritt Lib Dems
I have lived in London all my life and I am a big fan of the Marylebone area. I still go there often to get my eyebrows done and usually have a look around the shops and grab a bite to eat while I am there. I have also worked in the area in the past, which meant I could enjoy the great bars and restaurants around there after work.
The economic recovery from the pandemic is key. I am the only candidate with a plan for some of the big changes that have been accelerated by the pandemic.
The rise of online shopping and the shift to homeworking will hit Marylebone particularly hard if we do not act now. We have also got to play our part in tackling the global climate emergency and our city is of course strongly impacted by Brexit too.
What are your ambitions for London and Marylebone?
My plan to Take London Forward is all about embracing change. It has a clear focus on Londoners’ basic needs: Jobs, Homes and Clean Air.
We need to reinvent the high street for the future and ensure that the centre of London continues to be a thriving place to both live and work. We can convert some of the empty office space coming back onto the market into quality, affordable homes. And we need to make it easier for people to make greener choices, by encouraging more walking and cycling and investing in clean, green public transport.
If you were Mayor for one day, what would you do?
I hope to be Mayor for more than one day! But If it was just for one, I’d get more done than Sadiq Khan has in the past five years and finally open Crossrail!
Here is the full list of 20 candidates in the order they will appear on the ballot paper (alphabetical) with their chosen party or independent description.
BAILEY Shaun - Conservative Party
BALAYEV Kam - Renew
BERRY Sian - Green Party
BINFACE Count - Count Binface for Mayor of London
CORBYN Piers - Let London Live
FOSH Max - Independent
FOX Laurence - The Reclaim Party
GAMMONS Peter - UKIP
HEWISON Richard - Rejoin EU
HUDSON Vanessa - Animal Welfare Party – People, Animals, Environment
KELLEHER Steve - Social Democratic Party
KHAN Sadiq - Labour Party
KURTEN David - Heritage Party
LONDON Farah - Independent
BROWN Valerie - The Burning Pink Party
OBUNGE Nims - Independent
OMILANA Niko - Independent
PORRITT Luisa - Liberal Democrats
REID Mandu - Vote Women’s Equality Party on orange
ROSE Brian - London Real Party
The Marylebone Association
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