London elects: Thomas Clarke (Liberal Democrats)


Thomas Clarke is the Liberal Democrat candidate for the Havering & Redbridge constituency in this month’s London Assembly election. Here’s why he thinks he deserves your vote on 6 May

Wanstead was one of the first places I visited when lockdown restrictions were lifted – it is one of those fantastic places in London that has a buzzing High Street and stunning natural habitat. I am very passionate about green spaces, being chairman of the Essex Cricket League where Wanstead and Snaresbrook Cricket Club play – and have had great success. I look forward to meeting their members in our fixtures this summer.

I am proud to be standing as the Liberal Democrat GLA candidate for Havering and Redbridge. It is an area I have lived in for almost my entire life, and I want to be able to give the residents of the boroughs a different and viable option to that of the two tired traditional parties. I am a father to two young children and I want them to be able to enjoy a safe, healthy and successful life. Here are three ways I would commit to help that happen.

  1. Help reinvent our high streets so they are once more a viable place for businesses to flourish. A part of this would be to fight for small business COVID compensation and also the ability for these businesses to unlock more apprenticeships.
  2. I would help the Liberal Democrats put a stop to the current mayor’s polluting projects and invest in essential green infrastructure that will make the air we all breathe cleaner. The Lib Dems would stop the expansion of City Airport and the Silvertown Tunnel and spend instead on walking, cycling and green public transport.
  3. I read in the Wanstead Village Directory recently about the 10 species at risk of extinction in Wanstead – it is a huge shame these vital parts of the ecosystem could be lost. One policy that could help halt this loss is an idea from Liberal Democrat mayoral candidate Luisa Porritt, who has called on London to follow in the footsteps of Chicago and Copenhagen and commit to ‘green every roof’ in the capital. The policy would see buildings in the capital covered in vegetation and solar panels, leading to lower energy bills, creating a new city landscape and vital habitat for wildlife.

During lockdown, we all took more interest in and, for many, used our green public spaces a lot more than we had done before. For those residents without gardens these areas were places to go for exercise and to de-stress from the nightmare of juggling work and home schooling. I am passionate about protecting these areas in Redbridge and Havering while also allowing the businesses that neighbour them to thrive in a post-COVID world.

Havering & Redbridge constituency candidates for the London Assembly are: Thomas Clarke (Liberal Democrats), Melanie Collins (Green), Judith Garfield (Labour), Keith Prince (Conservative), Richard Tice (Reform UK) and Andy Walker (Trade Unionist & Socialist Coalition). For more information, visit wnstd.com/LA