London Assembly Elections 2016

Hampstead community activist Stephen Taylor has been selected from three contenders to be the party's candidate in the Barnet and Camden constituency in next year's London Assembly elections.

 

 

Stephen will challenge current Barnet and Camden Assembly member, Labour's Andrew Dismore, and newly-selected Conservative candidate Daniel Thomas.

 

Greens are hoping Stephen will improve on the party's already strong local performance in the 2012 London Assembly elections, when Woodside Park stalwart AM Poppy seized a 10.7 percent share of the ballot. Her total of nearly 18,000 votes beat the Liberal Democrat candidate by several thousand votes and lifted her to third place.

 

 Stephen is a computer programmer who for a decade has promoted the community group he founded in the Hampstead, NW3, street where he and his partner Miki live. In 2011 he also founded Londoners On Bikes, a popup campaign to make cycling an issue in the 2012 London Mayoral election.

 

"London is the most international city in the world, bound in a global web of trade agreements, finance, politics and tax shelters. Very little of this activity serves the common good," Stephen said.

"I have spent most of my working life in and around the financial markets, growing more uneasy the more I understand. Our system, our economy, is ruining us.

"Our most immediate local problems – overpriced housing and the lethal air pollution – have their roots deep in the global web. We Londoners need a liveable city that serves us. We need local solutions. We can get them – if we think globally."

 

Stephen was selected by a postal ballot among nearly 1,000 Green Party members in Barnet and Camden boroughs and after a lively internal hustings at The Bohemia in North Finchley earlier this month.

 

He won by a slender margin against New Barnet-based builder and 'Occupy' movement campaigner Raymundo Obedencio, more usually known just as 'Obi'. The third Green contender was young Childs Hill newcomer Maria Park.

 

Stephen will support the campaigns of the Green Party's London Mayoral challenger Sian Berry, already a Highgate councillor, and the party's leading runners in the Londonwide Assembly vote, Sian Berry and Islington's Green councillor Caroline Russell.

 

Sian and Caroline are aiming to take over on the London Assembly from long-serving Green Party stalwarts Jenny Jones and Darren Johnson, both of whom are standing down from City Hall. The Greens are also hoping to win a third Londonwide seat, with national deputy leader Shahrar Ali poised to take up that place should the Green vote be strong enough.

 

"The buildup to the coming climate summit in Paris highlights that neither the Conservatives nor Labour have a realistic policy on fighting global warming and neither seems to regard this enormous problem as a priority issue. The Greens do," said Andrew Newby, chair of Barnet Greens and the party's agent for the Barnet and Camden constituency.

Contacts:

 

Stephen Taylor: sjt@5jt.com

 

Andrew Newby: andrewnewby1@gmail.com