Thank you to everyone who voted to elect me in Hammersmith last Thursday. For those who missed the full result, here it is:
It was a big swing to Labour with the majority increasing from 3,500 to 6,500 in what was a good night for Labour in London, but a poor night for the Party across the country.
Clearly there will have to be a lot of soul searching to put us in a position to win the next General Election in 2020. More immediately we need to elect a London Labour Mayor next year.
I'm very grateful to everyone who has supported me for the last five years, who has helped me do my job as a local MP, and who voted for me. But it goes without saying that I represent everyone who lives and works in Hammersmith. I'm in the process of setting up my weekly surgeries again and details of these will be published on my website shortly.
In the meantime, if you need help with anything, then please reply to this e-mail.
A difficult 5 years ahead
Having had a few days to take in the result here and around the country, we now need to start looking again at the crucial local issues that are important to the quality of live here in Hammersmith. Regular readers will not be surprised to hear what is on my priority list.
- Stopping the demolition of Charing Cross Hospital and the closure of essential local health services.
- Opposing a third runway at Heathrow.
- Ensuring the Old Oak development area - the site for HS2 and Crossrail - provides homes and jobs for local people, not the mini-Manhattan Boris Johnson has threatened.
- Halting the demolition of the West Kensington & Gibbs Green estates, which would replace affordable homes with high-rise luxury flats.
- Saving Shepherds Bush Market.
If this agenda sounds rather defensive, I make no apology for that. We need to preserve the quality of life and the mixed community we have in Hammermsith & Fulham against the Tories' attempts to socially engineer the Borough and put developers' interests before residents'.
However, there is some cause for optimism. I'm delighted the Labour Council has managed to buy back Hammersmith Park, which the Tories sold to a private company. There is a consultation meeting on the new plans for the Park tomorrow (Thursday) evening at the White City Community Centre.
I look forward to working with our excellent Labour Council, and I hope a Labour Mayor from next year, to try to address the needs of the community, in particular to ensure we are building affordable homes to rent and buy and protecting our essential public services, most notably our NHS.
London Legal Walk
Please sponsor me in raising funds for our fantastic local Law Centre. With the new Conservative Government already talking about massive cuts to the welfare budget, attacks on civil liberties, selling off affordable housing and anti-immigrant policies, there's never been a greater need for good quality advice and legal help. But of course, they've already programmed massive cuts to legal aid and closed many advice centres.
We're lucky to have one of the best law centres in the country in Hammermsith & Fulham and I'm proud to have been on the management board for nearly 25 years, but it's suffering from both an increase in demand and cuts in legal aid. So along with judges, lawyers and law centre staff, I'm talking part in the London Legal Walk next Monday when we expect over 8,000 people to be walking or running to raise funds for the not for profit advice sector. Please make a donation here.
If you want an example of the excellent work done by the law centre, then read this article.
Thank you again for all your support.