Voters in Putney sent a strong message to Wandsworth Town Hall yesterday, registering a 16% swing to the Labour Party in the Thamesfield by-election. The Conservative Party saw a 20 percentage point fall in their share of the vote in a ward which saw the highest number of Conservative votes in the May 2010 Council elections. The Labour Candidate Christian Klapp increased Labour’s share of the vote from 19% to over 31%.
If the result was repeated across the Putney constituency, it would unseat Conservative minister Justine Greening.
Commenting on the result, Wandsworth Labour Group leader Councillor Rex Osborn said: “Yesterday’s result sends a strong message to the Conservatives running Wandsworth Council. Residents are unhappy with the way the cuts are being implented, and angry that their Council has lost touch with their needs.
“If a general election had been held yesterday, a swing of this size across Putney would have unseated the Conservative minister Justine Greening.
“Everyone knows that our Council has to find ways of saving money – but to suggest that our children should have to pay to use a playground shows that the Conservatives are completely out of touch with the public mood. Before cutting essential frontline services and charging children to play, the Council should look at the bonuses it is paying its directors, and the tax breaks it is granting second homeowners in the Borough.
“We hope the Conservatives take some time to reflect on yesterday’s result, and start listening to residents before they push ahead with any further cuts to essential frontline services.”
Notes to Editors
Thamesfield is a ward in the Putney area, within the Borough of Wandsworth. A by-election was held on 30 June 2011 following the resignation of former Wandsworth Council leader Edward Lister in May. Mr Lister resigned his post after being appointed as the deputy mayor of London by Boris Johnson.
Thamesfield by-election results:
Michael Ryder, Conservative, 1,497 (45.7%)
Christian Klapp, Labour, 1,022 (31.2%)
Lisa Smart, Liberal Democrats 545 (16.7%)
Marian Hoffman, Green, 202 (6.2%)
The result represented a 16% swing from Conservative to Labour. To see the results of the May 2010 election in Thamesfield, goto http://www.wandsworth.gov.uk/info/1000/elections-results/632/borough_council_elections/16