With Labour's Dame Joan Ruddock retiring, who will be the next MP to represent Lewisham Deptford?

News Shopper:


Where do you live? Lewisham Deptford

Why do you want to represent this constituency? Having lived in Lewisham Deptford for over a decade I know how this government’s policies have affected local people. Lewisham Council has been hit 16 times harder than the richest boroughs in the UK by Tory and Lib Dem cuts. From the Save Lewisham Hospital Campaign to fighting on Lewisham Council for more affordable housing I have shown that I care about my community and am willing to stand up for our public services and for the things that matter to local people. If elected I promise to be a strong local voice for more genuinely affordable housing, a living wage for everyone in work and extended free childcare. 

News Shopper:


Age? 38

Where do you live? Peckham

Where are you from originally? Peckham 

Why do you want to represent this constituency? I have a track record as a former ward councillor and housing spokesperson across the borough boundary in Southwark. I will devote time, energy and vision for a brighter future by ensuring every child is taught by a qualified teacher, by protecting spending on spending on nurseries, schools and colleges; guaranteeing equal care and waiting times for mental health as for physical health, by increasing spending in the NHS; cutting income tax by £400 for low and middle earners, easing the squeeze on household budgets; and doubling the number of businesses hiring apprentices, expanding opportunity in every sector.

What local policy are you most passionate about? 'Stop and search' is an oppressive measure used disproportionately against young black boys by the police. Liberal Democrats would ensure that body cameras on police officers are mandatory when carrying out stop and search procedures in future.

Describe yourself in 3 words: Local, strong, champion.

Who is your biggest hero? Nelson Mandela and his struggle for freedom over his oppressors. 

What is your proudest moment? Being elected as a ward councillor for the people of South Bermondsey within the London Borough of Southwark (2010 - 2014).

News Shopper:


Age? 29

Where do you live? South London.  

Where are you from originally? Grew up all over the country as my father was an NHS doctor - he was posted all around the country.  Ended up settling in my teens in Berkshire.

Why do you want to represent this constituency? I love Lewisham and Deptford. The beautiful green spaces, the amazing markets, the brilliant music scene, and the wonderful melting pot of cultures and backgrounds all make this a great place to be. But it can be better, much better. As the son of an NHS doctor and pharmacist, I understand how crucial the NHS is; as a lawyer who advises businesses, big and small, I know what it takes to attract good jobs here; as a school governor for many years, I know how to work with teachers and parents to improve schools; as a husband and father, I know how important good and affordable childcare is; as someone who understands the local economy, I am fighting hard for the Bakerloo line extension.

What local policy are you most passionate about? I strongly support the proposal from TFL to bring the Bakerloo line to New Cross Gate, Lewisham and Ladywell stations. As somebody who has managed and handled multi-billion pound transactions and negotiated major contracts as a corporate lawyer, I have the right experience to lead negotiations on the Bakerloo line extension.

Describe yourself in 3 words: Fun, determined and thoughtful.

Who is your biggest hero? Winston Churchill

What is your proudest moment? Winning a place at Oxford University at 17 years old. It showed me that hard work can pay off, and there are no barriers to what you can achieve in life if you are focused and determined.

News Shopper:


Age? 47

Where do you live? At the Hither Green end of Lewisham.

Where are you from originally? Kent

Why do you want to represent this constituency? To offer an alternative to Labour’s stranglehold on Lewisham.

What local policy are you most passionate about? Law and order, clean streets

Describe yourself in 3 words: Real, honest and caring

Who is your biggest hero? Frank Sinatra

What is your proudest moment? Being a contestant on Deal or No Deal when a box was knocked open by accident. The contents were reshuffled and I went on to win £7,400. Forget 'Watergate', this was 'Boxgate'. 

News Shopper:


Age? 58

Where do you live? Lewisham, Ladywell

Where are you from originally? Acton, west London

Why do you want to represent this constituency? Because I have worked hard on their behalf and with their support. To vote for People Before Profit is to vote for an end to the privatisation, profiteering, cuts that all main parties have espoused for decades now. I have fought for the local hospital, for decent housing and against the new 'developments' which are built for developers' profits and provide little of the social housing so desperately needed by the people of Lewisham. I also believe in preserving and cherishing our heritage and succeeded in getting Lewisham Bridge School listed - provoking the anger and ire of the local political parties.

What local policy are you most passionate about? Housing

Describe yourself in 3 words: Informed, committed, straightforward

Who is your biggest hero? The common people are my heroes - just ordinary people seeking an honest, secure and fulfilled life. 

What is you proudest moment? When I saw the first save Lewisham Hospital demo wind its way towards Ladywell Fields along the Ladywell Road. I was standing at the entrance. I had been the chief proponent and organiser of that and the two subsequent demos. I still sometimes have tears come to my eyes when I think what it was like to see the banner we had commissioned waving, the hospital workers in front, my partner who was the chief steward and the 10,000 Lewisham people who turned out on the rainiest of days. 

News Shopper:


Why do you want to represent this constituency? I want to use the position to take on the main political parties including UKIP who argue cuts have to happen. They don't. I stand 100 per cent against austerity and want to put the arguments against austerity forward, much like I used to when I was socialist councillor.

What local policy are you most passionate about? Reversing the cuts.

Describe yourself in 3 words? Socialist. Fun. Compassionate.

Who is your biggest hero? Not into hero worship! But if I had to choose I'd say Kshama Sawant, a migrant, Asian woman who came to study in the US, stayed and became a socialist city councillor in Seattle. She took on the US elites, won a seat and achieved a massive victory in winning a minimum $15 an hour across the city for all workers. It's now taken off across the US as a campaign and demand.

What is your proudest moment? Whilst a socialist councillor on Lewisham Council stopping a large volume of council housing being privatised in the borough along with the New Cross Hands off Our Homes campaigners.

News Shopper:


Age? 62

Where do you live? I live and work locally in Crofton Park

Where are you from originally? Southwark

Why do you want to represent this constituency? To assist in improving local people's life experiences.

What local policy are you most passionate about? To increase the amount of affordable housing for local people, improve the quality of health and social care in Lewisham and significantly improve the local economy by increasing the flow of money into and around it.

Describe yourself in 3 words? Passionate, articulate and committed.

Who is your biggest hero? Jesus of Nazareth

What is your proudest moment? The opening of any social facility (voluntary hospice, enlarged school, enlarged charity care home) I had been instrumental in bringing about.

News Shopper:


Age? 26

Where do you live? Ladywell, Lewisham

Where are you from originally? Warwickshire originally, but I'm well and truly a local now.

Why do you want to represent this constituency? The question is irrelevant. In an ultra-safe seat only the established party can win. The goals of Democratic Reform in this election are to ensure that Labour uses increased local consultation, puts constituents before party whips, begins to use online technologies to facilitate democratic initiatives, and commits to the end of injustices such as homelessness. 

What local policy are you most passionate about? Local democracy, and local rights. 52 per cent of people seeking help with homelessness are under 25. Only 44 per cent of 18-24 year olds voted in 2010, and less will this May. Student debts are higher than ever before, and career prospects seemingly lower. Yet almost half of the constituency is aged under 35, and there will be no mandate to govern these people after the election. That's why I campaign for increased consultation.

Describe yourself in 3 words? Practical, Reasonable, Collaborative

Who is your biggest hero? Not a politician, but Ayrton Senna. His concept of racing to the limit, and then exceeding the limit, is a philosophy that always makes me want to push myself. 

What is your proudest moment? My proudest moment is probably during this campaign, when a lady at Lewisham Pensioners Forum said: "it's great to see someone so young involved in politics". I was honoured to be considered as the representative for a whole new generation of people.

News Shopper:


Age? 31, I think, 1983 was when I was born.

Where do you live? Luckily enough in a house, rented of course. But I am consistently reminded how lucky I am to be there by the homeless people I see at work every day. 

Where are you from originally? My mother, I'd like to meet anyone that isn't (Devon, Exmouth. Came to London to follow my lover, we are getting married in June.)

Why do you want to represent this constituency? Obviously the one where I live and work, where else would I stand. 

What local policy are you most passionate about? Locally or nationally, it's all about voter engagement! 

Describe yourself in 3 words? Mentally ill (is that just two?)

Who is your biggest hero? Difficult, depends on the group I'm in. My cousin Andy for just doing it, and Dr John Drury for his support with my independent research project whenever I ask.

What is your proudest moment? Cycling up the Col du Tourmalet with a bike trailer on a dirt jumping bike.


For your guide to the General Election in Lewisham, click here.