A blog by Luke Akehurst about politics, elections, and the Labour Party - With subtitles for the Hard of Left. Just for the record: all the views expressed here are entirely personal and do not necessarily represent the positions of any organisations I am a member of.

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Walthamstow selection

As I've now gone public elsewhere about my decision, I thought I should report here that, assuming it is not an All Women Shortlist, I'm going to be throwing my hat in the ring for the Walthamstow Parliamentary selection caused by the recent announcement that Neil Gerrard MP will be retiring at the next General Election.


Blogger Welsh Spin said...

Good luck.

1:25 am, March 05, 2007

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I assume you and Stella have devised some way not to split the vote?

11:04 am, March 05, 2007

Anonymous Ted Harvey said...

I really, really, like the idea of an MP from Dalston.

11:39 am, March 05, 2007

Anonymous Loony Lambeth said...


Recently at my CLP (Vauxhall) AGM we nominated you for some national policy forum. I am still none the wiser about what it actually is - please could you enlighten me about what the body is and what you will actually be doing?


Loony Lambeth

12:39 pm, March 05, 2007

Blogger Martin said...

Neil has been an excellent MP for E17, always replies to emails and letters, and hasn't been afraid to vote against the govmt on matters of principle. If you end up as MP in Walthamstow I'd hope we can expect more of the same

1:37 pm, March 05, 2007

Anonymous true labour said...

Neil is a hard act to follow. Don't mess it up with your usual right wing views. Listen to the people.

1:45 pm, March 05, 2007

Anonymous redlabour said...

My MP announced she was standing down yesterday. She said she wanted someone of similar views(ie left-of-centre Labour and prepared to rebel when absolutely necessary) to replace her.I would have thought NeilGerrard was ofsimilar ilk?

1:58 pm, March 05, 2007

Anonymous duncan said...

Luke - no objections to seeing you in parliament one of these days, but I have to confess I don't wish you luck with this one, as I'd like to see the Campaign Group replenishing itself where anyone's standing down.

4:47 pm, March 05, 2007

Anonymous Anonymous said...

"My MP announced she was standing down yesterday"


6:00 pm, March 05, 2007

Blogger HenryG said...

Luke do you think being a high profile Labour blogger will be a help or a hindrance to your selection attempts?

7:07 pm, March 05, 2007

Blogger Luke Akehurst said...

Anonymous - Stella is a good friend of mine and I'm happy to put on record that she would make an excellent MP. There are a whole bunch of people potentially running who are good. There's no question of "splitting the vote" because the final selection conference is an eliminating ballot - and at the nomination stage if it is not AWS then branches vote for a man, a woman, and an additional BME candidate.

7:45 pm, March 05, 2007

Blogger Luke Akehurst said...

henryg asks "Luke do you think being a high profile Labour blogger will be a help or a hindrance to your selection attempts?"

Realistically it is likely to be a hindrance - you can't hide or spin your politics if you have broadcast them on the internet for nearly a year. But then I never hid my politics before I was a blogger and most people seem to prefer an honest approach - "what you see is what you get" - people don't expect their PPC or MP to agree with them on everything. I'm confident (particularly following today's Yougov poll) that there are a large number of members in any CLP who are coming from broadly the same place as me, and some of those who aren't may back me for other reasons e.g. proven campaigning record.

8:15 pm, March 05, 2007

Blogger Luke Akehurst said...

Duncan, thanks ... but I don't think constituencies should be sinecures for one ideological brand of Labour MP, passed on only to people with the same politics. Members change and CLPs change - look at the politics of the 2 Hackney CLPs which are unrecognisable from when Abbott and Sedgemore were selected.

8:19 pm, March 05, 2007

Anonymous duncan said...

Luke - I wasn't setting it as an inalienable principle! Just saying that that was what I'd like to see!

I don't actually know much about the CLP there, although I understood Neil was popular.

9:25 pm, March 05, 2007

Anonymous duncan said...

(For example, Luke, I assume I wouldn't be your first choice for the Sedgefield selection later in the year... Nor that of Sedgefield CLP members, I fear...)

9:47 pm, March 05, 2007

Blogger BarryB said...

Luke I will let my friends in Walthamstow CLP know that you are seeking selection.

12:27 pm, March 06, 2007

Anonymous Anonymous said...

redlabour said...

"My MP announced she was standing down yesterday"

Who is it?
or is redlabour having us on?

5:21 pm, March 06, 2007

Anonymous Andrea said...

maybe we should try and guess who redlabour was referring to....I don't think there are many female MPs on the centre-left of the party, with some rebellions in her voting history and with the likehood to retire

6:41 pm, March 06, 2007

Anonymous Philip Creasy said...


I live in Walthamstow. Who is Stella? Presumably you can't share the seat so you will have to split the vote.

9:02 am, March 07, 2007

Anonymous Andrea said...

"I live in Walthamstow. Who is Stella?"

I think they meant former Councillor Stella Creasy

9:31 am, March 07, 2007

Blogger Luke Akehurst said...

I don't quite understand the references to "splitting votes" - each of the individual members of a CLP choses who to vote for using whatever criteria they see fit - and chooses 2nd, 3rd and lower preferences via an eliminating ballot should their first choice not be popular. Generally speaking there aren't organised blocks of votes to be split.

I like the idea of jobshare MPs though.

9:55 am, March 07, 2007

Blogger PhilCh said...

An earlier post, attributed to 'philip creasy', said:
"I live in Walthamstow. Who is Stella? Presumably you can't share the seat so you will have to split the vote."

So that there is no confusion please note that my name is also Philip Creasy, and I too live in Walthamstow. I am secretary of East Walthamstow BLP, and I should like to make it clear I have no connection with the earlier comment, or the person who posted it [who is not a party member in Walthamstow].

I do also happen to know who Stella is - my daughter - of whom I am naturally rather fond and proud.

1:22 am, March 08, 2007

Anonymous Anonymous said...

With Simon Wright, Clyde Loakes Stella Creasy and now Luke all talking about it, plenty of shenanigans ahead. And this is even before the serious big shots from outside apply.

11:58 am, March 10, 2007

Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Walthamstow party's building a bit of a presence on facebook. Perhaps you should join up...

12:22 pm, March 10, 2007

Anonymous stamper said...

Anonymous is right. There is a wide local field with Simon Wright, Stella Creasy, Laura Bruni, Afzal Akram, Liaquat Ali and Clyde Loakes all looking like they are in the frame.

Lots of rumours are knocking around about John Cryer coming in from the cold too - which would keep the Campaign Group happy. Stephen Twigg is also said to be toying with the idea...

8:10 pm, March 10, 2007

Anonymous Andrea said...

"Lots of rumours are knocking around about John Cryer coming in from the cold too"

after his 2005 defeat, Cryer said he may try to fight an east London seat in the future. So trying there would fit his previous claims

Re Simon Wright....why was he moved from his previous ward to Leyton in 2006 locals? I read claims he was deselected in High Street...is it true or were they just malicious rumours?

4:05 pm, March 11, 2007

Anonymous Stamper said...

"I read claims he was deselected in High Street"

I suppose that's fair comment - Simon was an immensely effective councillor responsible for the massive infrastructural changes currently underway in the town centre (bus station, library). Unfortunately he picked up a few enemies on the way.

Mark of a good politician in my view. I'd put Stella in the same boat - victims of success.

7:23 pm, March 11, 2007

Anonymous Anonymous said...

There were plenty of stitch-ups that year in Waltham Forest - a whole raft of talent was lost at selection. Simon handled it with dignity, I thought, choosing to stand and run campaign in an unwinnable LD ward, and taking one of the seats from them. And stupidly and unnecessarily, High Street is now two LD and one Lab councillor.

6:34 pm, March 12, 2007

Anonymous Miranda said...

"There were plenty of stitch-ups that year in Waltham Forest - a whole raft of talent was lost at selection. Simon handled it with dignity, I thought, choosing to stand and run campaign in an unwinnable LD ward, and taking one of the seats from them".

Absolutely, Anonymous. I do intend to discuss my feelings about Walthamstow as I do not think it would be apprpriate at this momnent in time. However, I would like to pick up your comment about Simon Wright though. I've said it before and I will keep on saying it to anyone who'll listen. Simon Wright is amazing and without him I would NEVER have been elected in Leyton ward last year. Here's a real live example of someone who put his party before his own personal ambition. He stood in Leyton ward despite the fact that everyone (apart from me and my mum!!!) was telling him it was an unwinnable ward for Labour. I wish Simon every success with his future. he is an extremely talented politician and deserves to prosper. I will be forever in his debt for the part he palyed in my election victory last year.

8:39 pm, March 13, 2007

Anonymous Miranda said...

Freudian slip: that was I DON'T intend to discuss my feelings about Walthamstow...

8:41 pm, March 13, 2007

Anonymous High St Labour said...

Following up the earlier comment, Simon Wright was not deselected. He was the victim of a rather short-sighted coalition who wanted their people in instead. So short-sighted were they that they failed to realise they had lost an excellent local campaigner who raised the profile of the other Labour candidates. This is a principal reason Labour lost two seats in High Street ward to the Fib Dems.

1:01 pm, March 25, 2007

Anonymous Anonymous said...

It always amazes me how Simon Wright has such a good standing within the local Labour party. Yet such a bad standing in the local community he served.

The man lied and connived about several key issues in Walthamstow town centre. In my dealings with him he increasingly came across as arrogant, unpleasant and two-faced. And I'm not alone in this viewpoint - it's the norm amongst most I've spoken to.

He has a disastrously bad reputation among Walthamstow residents. And he's a fool if he's thinking of standing in Waltham Forest. Frankly, the Labour Party are lucky he was deselected (admittedly due to some rather dodgy shenanigans) in High Street. As his presence there would have meant even more lost seats for Labour.

2:09 pm, March 26, 2007

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Rubbish. You clearly disagree with his judgement on the issue you care about, but I bet you have no evidence of lying....quite the opposite actually.

10:22 am, April 07, 2007

Blogger Stamper said...

Good God! That's fighting talk from yet another "anonymous" commentator. Anyone with feelings that strong should make themselves known really.

I have to say I completely disagree with the comments above. Simon has always been an excellent and scrupulously honest councillor - in fact a great flag-bearer for the Labour movement.

Anyway - this is Luke's blog isn't it!?

11:13 am, April 10, 2007

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Re: Simon Wright: "You clearly disagree with his judgement"

Yup, I do. But I wasn't posting about that.

"I bet you have no evidence of lying....quite the opposite actually."

Nope, quite the opposite to what you say.

He said to me, and many others, for instance, that a survey done of residents showed that only middle class white people living near the EMD cinema cared about its fate. An FOI request of that survey finally showed this not to be the case - the cinema was widely cared about throughout the borough.

Also, he made public pronouncements about supporting the EMD while behind-the-scenes the same FOI requests show he and council officers under his command were in negotiations to undermine the EMD cinema.

Plus he also misrepresented repeatedly the true state of affairs regarding the "Arcade" site in Walthamstow.

On top of that, he has to my knowledge played some very ugly and personal politics inside WF Labour group.

As to Stamper attacking me for remaining anonymous, I remain so because the man has a vindictive streak a mile wide. Sorry.

11:29 am, April 10, 2007

Anonymous Simon Wright said...

However obsessed you are about this issue and me, it does not give you the right to post anonymous libels and insinuations. Firstly, the survey did show greater support for a new multiplex cinema in ethnic minority respondents (I would never have claimed no support for EMD from these communities). Your supposed revelation of "lies" about both the EMD and arcade just express your unhappiness that the council was not backing your campigning but had to deal with realities and take difficult decisions and try to cover all eventualities. Finally, the mysterious insinuations about internal Labour politics are just rubbish (see the posts above which show that I was certainly not a beneficiary of dodgy deals). And my vindictive streak? All these insults are very easy to say but totally unjustified. If you post again, have the courage to put your name and evidence to these devious accusations.

7:16 am, May 04, 2007

Anonymous mrShop said...

Very interesting!

7:04 pm, August 02, 2007

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1:13 am, August 07, 2008

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm really glad you weren't selected

10:21 pm, May 14, 2009


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