Big win for Labour in Selhurst by-election
Labour’s David Wood has won a thumping victory in the Selhurst by-election. The election took place to fill a vacancy caused by the sad death of former councillor Gerry Ryan.
Labour won over 71% of the vote, with the Tories left trailing on just 11.6%. This represents a giant 10.7% swing to Labour since the council elections less than a year ago.
David Wood lives in Selhurst with his wife and two young children. He has been a governor or Whitehorse Manor Primary School for seven years. During the election campaign he pledged to campaign for cleaner streets, more police on the beat, jobs and investment in the local area, and backed Labour’s plans to freeze council tax this year after the Tories hiked it up to record levels.
UKIP were widely criticised for forcing the election to take place just weeks before the General Election scheduled for 7 May. This not only landed tax-payers with an unnecessary £15,000 bill but broke the convention that by-elections are not called before the previous incumbent’s funeral out of respect for the family. UKIP’s candidate secured a humiliating fourth place behind the Conservatives and the Greens.
Speaking after the result was declared, Croydon North MP Steve Reed said: “I congratulate David Wood on securing a big victory for Labour in the Selhurst by-election. He will be an outstanding and hard-working councillor for local people. The scale of David’s victory sends a clear message that residents back Labour’s plans to clean up the streets after years of Tory neglect, bring new jobs and investment to the whole borough, and keep council tax down.”
Newly elected councillor David Wood said: “It’s a humbling experience to be elected to represent Selhurst on Croydon Council. I will work tirelessly to make life better for the people who live in our community.”
The scale of Labour’s win was so big that, if repeated borough-wide, it would topple the sitting Tory MP in Croydon Central as well as Conservative councillors such as Vidhi Mohan at the next council elections.