please empty your brain below

I think the election showed that Croydon South is not the quintessentially Conservative borough that people imagine it to be.

A 12,000 majority (slight boundary changes since then) was reduced to little over 2,300. I personally believe that had it not been a perception that the MP achieves a lot for the borough and what I think was a poor Labour candidate the result could have been different. Certainly Labour were not afraid to appear on the doorstep this time. Conservative leaflets concentrated entirely on local issues and didn't mention Rishi Sunak or the Conservative government.

Purley tower sums up the problems of an MP who jumps on any popular bandwagon he thinks will enhance his position clashing with a council that did mismanage things but, as you say, the ultimate source was the funding squeeze which led the council into making reckless but well-intentioned decisions (similar to some Conservative councils).

Purley tower was opposed by our MP and some locals but Croydon council approved it anyway. Michael Gove as minister rejected it but that was overturned by the high court who decided he either hadn't followed procedure or that his ruling was irrational (I forget which). Meanwhile the centre of town is blighted by a patch of waste land. The absurdity of it is that large blocks of flats have subsequently been built at the top of the hill meaning the tower would no longer be that dominant. There are now large blocks of flats opposite it so it would no longer be out of keeping with the town centre.

Meanwhile Mrs Pedantic is still upset because years ago she took part in a small demonstration at Croydon Town Hall opposing the tower. She did not go as a Conservative and would be horrified to be thought of as a Conservative but a picture taken there still appears on the Conservative propaganda showing what Conservatives have done to campaign locally.
Hi PoP,

Could you elaborate on your view of the Labour candidate in Croydon South?

I have no particular view on this, just trying to work out why Croydon South stayed blue whilst so many seats with similar majorities turned red.


To be clear, I think the main reason Croydon South stayed blue was the enormous popularity of an MP who gets involved in local issues and slagging off the Labour council whilst not mentioning his substantial role in government. I think his claims as to what he has actually achieved locally are enormously bloated but he has a large and loyal fanbase who believe in him.

In contrast, the picture of the Labour candidate was not flattering, his aspirations largely waffle and often not something he could influence and past performance on local issues was a complete unknown to most people.
I suppose there is at least a possibility that Chris Philp (which my spellcheck wants to correct to Philip) could be the next Conservative party leader.

Or Iain Duncan Smith again. Too quiet for politics today perhaps.
I am rather sad to see Elliot Colburn as one of the night's Tory casualties, however glad I may be to see that healthy swathe of yellow. He was not afraid to stand against the tide of toxicity all around him, though it just made me wonder why he ever wanted to align himself with them in the first place.
Interesting read.
Very kind of the election to gift you this triple-boundary. Had it also been beside Islington North, would have been the Holy Grail!
I'm afraid my experience of Mr. Colburn was that he didn't respond to difficult questions and his "polls" of the constituency were naked data farming enterprises. The previous MP at least gave an answer to questions he was clearly uncomfortable with. Not the worst MP by a long shot (he did vote to chastise Johnson), but we're used to better after 20 years as LD.
A few London constituencies flip between Conservative and Liberal Democrat. Wimbledon is perhaps London's most marginal constituency. Since 1997 it has been held consecutively by Labour, Conservative and now Liberal Democrats. For good measure, for a brief period in 2019 the incumbent, Stephen Hammond sat as an Independent having lost his party's whip for rebelling on a key Brexit vote.

Steatham has also return all three parties, but the last Conservative MP was elected in the 1987 General Election.
Technically there are four colours so "all three colours" isn't right :p
I believe the Wetherspoon’s in Purley is no longer actually a Wetherspoon’s. Like a good few it’s been sold off, like many of these sell offs it looks unchanged from the outside.

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