Croydon Liberal Democrats today announce their candidates to fight the five by-elections following the resignations of Labour and Conservative councillors across Croydon borough.
Croydon's Liberal Democrats are determined to prove to those voters in Croydon that they do have a choice beyond Labour and the Conservatives - the two parties that have let Croydon residents and businesses down so badly over the last 15 years.
Between them, since 2004, Labour and the Conservatives have saddled Croydon Council with over £1.5 billion of debt. While the recent bankruptcy might have come under a Labour administration, Croydon's financial woes date back to a Conservative leadership which handed over an authority already owing nearly two thirds of our current debt - nearly £0.9 billion.
Claire Bonham, the local party Chair and constituency candidate for Croydon and Sutton in the London Assembly elections, said:
"For too long, Croydon's politics have been dominated by two local parties with an appalling track record. From uncollected Council Tax to £140 million Council offices, and from risky investments to bankruptcy - Croydon residents deserve better.
"Electing Liberal Democrat councillors in Croydon will give proper scrutiny to challenge such poor decisions from being made and so hold these parties to account."
Local resident Richard Howard moved to Addiscombe in 2014 after an 18 year career in the British Army, reaching the rank of Major, having served as a bomb disposal operator in Afghanistan and Northern Ireland. He has been motivated to stand in the Park Hill & Whitgift ward. As a holder of the Chartered Financial Analyst designation, Richard now runs his own business helping people to plan and secure their financial future. Richard said:
“With my experience, I believe that I can provide the financial accountability and scrutiny that Croydon Council so desperately needs.”
Andrew Rendle is standing in Woodside, the ward in which he has lived with his family for 13 years. He is standing in the seat vacated by his former party leader and where was once a Labour councillor before resigning his membership of the Labour party frustrated at the leadership. Andrew said:
"We have seen recently how council tenants have been let down, it should not be journalists unearthing problems but local councillors. As a former councillor and MP's caseworker, dealing with individuals and helping them with all manner of issues is my motivation for standing."
Gill Hickson, a long-time hard working Lib Dem activist and candidate in Coulsdon says:
"We need hard working community champions who will work in the community and put local needs before party interests. Putting proper scrutiny on Croydon Council and promoting volunteers to improve our communities and make best use of resources. That’s what we demand, and knowing our candidates - it’s what they will provide."
Our candidates are: