Millwall supporters are standing a candidate in the general election after a row over the future of land surrounding The Den.
Lewisham East, a seat previously held by Labour’s Heidi Alexander, is being contested by 72-year-old Willow Winston.
In a statement published on Twitter the Association of Millwall Supporters (AMS) confirmed they are standing an “anti-gentrification” candidate.
They said: “The Association of Millwall Supporters confirms that it is to stand a candidate in the upcoming general election.
“Willow Winston is honest, well versed in community activities and above all, extremely disappointed with individuals not having a voice against the mighty powers of local developers and local councils in their continued proactive practices of social cleansing.
“AMS has been heartened at the public support it has received during the CPO campaign and the power of both social and printed media can help get the small voice in the wider political arena.”
The move comes after an ongoing dispute with Lewisham Council over the land surrounding The Den.
In September last year a comupulsory purchase order which would have seen the land forcibley sold to a developer was passed and later ‘called-in’ by the council’s scrutiny committee.
The CPO has been postponed while an investigation takes place following revelations of false funding claims by the Surrey Canal Sports Foundation who were commissioned to run sporting facilities at the site.
Lewisham Council planned to sell the land to developers Renewal which caused controversy after close ties to council members were highlighted.
The AMS statement continued: “We have felt for a long time that inner city communities are being forced to move out of their homes at alarming rates.
“These residents have grown up in areas that are now becoming unattainable to live in any more due to a lack of rented and or affordable housing.
“The continued gentrification of areas in cities all over the United Kingdom is, we feel, potentially destroying generations of local communities in the name of developer led profiteering.
“The AMS believes that it’s time to drain the swamp, it’s time the public starts to fight back against said commercial organisations and realise that there are our areas, these are our homes and playing fields that are being sold from underneath us.
“Due to the reasons stated above, the AMS is supporting Willow Winston in the general election on June 8 2017 to fight the seat in the Lewisham East constituency currently occupied by Heidi Alexander of the Labour Party.
“This decision has been taken to give a voice to the small person and for that voice to be heard in the wider political arena.
“This fight will be fought on fairness, honesty and integrity.”