What a great win for the Labour team in Wanstead Village. The campaign began back in October when, Jo Blackman, Daniel Morgan-Thomas and myself, were selected as Labour Party candidates for the newly formed ward of Wanstead Village.
Over the months the campaign has really taken off, with people coming in from across the borough and beyond to help out. Canvass sessions increased, as did the numbers coming out to walk those streets.
There was some good media coverage around our efforts to get the W12 bus restored to three times an hour. We were also supportive of the speed limit 20s Plenty campaign and other initiatives.
Election day arrived, with people coming in from across the country. The boys from Thanet, Keith, Barry and Martin came for the day. Jo’s friends and family pitched in to help out. TSSA general secretary Manuel Cortes came over to help.
Our comrades from Wanstead Park supported our efforts, as they have throughout the six month campaign. Some were disappointed not to see Dave from Chelmsford, who has been such a valiant supporter of our cause, regularly turning up to canvass on weekends over the months. Dave no doubt was lending his great services elsewhere on the day. His contribution will not be forgotten. Our "legend" Lois Molloy was also unable to be with us on the day due to work commitments...but she's still up there at the front when it comes to those canvass miles.
Our stalwart branch members battled to run campaign centres and get canvassers out on those streets. Many doors were knocked, with a good reception in most cases.
Then to the count at Redbridge Sports Centre in Fairlop. A long and glorious night for Labour ensued, that saw 15 gains with the party now holding 51 of the 63 seats on the council. The Tories are down to 12.
Things looked tight on the Wanstead Village result with the Tories piling up the votes alongside Labour. There was some concern in our ranks that the Greens had once again delivered for the Tories by taking from our vote but in the end it proved not to be the case. We came through victorious. It was also great to see Sheila Bain and Paul Merry retain their seats in Wanstead Park, thereby ensuring that red spread right across our area.
So now we have the next four years to contribute to making Wanstead and indeed Redbridge a greener and better place to live. Onward.
Result - Wanstead Village
Jo Blackman - 2009
Paul Donovan - 1935
Daniel Morgan Thomas - 1764