Labour’s Sarah Jones has said Croydon Central MP Gavin Barwell breaks his promises ahead of June’s general election.
The party’s candidate for Croydon Central says she knows the party faces a big challenge to get into government.
After a tough day for Labour in local elections across the country on May 5, Mrs Jones said that although the results on the day and election polls were not great reading for Labour, her team were hearing a different story in Croydon.
In the last general election in 2015, Gavin Barwell of the Conservatives won the seat by just 165 votes but Mrs Jones said he had broken promises in his time as MP.
She said: “I think he talks a good talk but says one thing in Croydon and another in Westminster.
“Twenty-million pounds is going to be taken out of Croydon schools and that’s going to hit hard across the constituency and borough.
“He promised to get a fairer slice of the cake for schools and he hasn’t.
“He promised to defend the NHS but local hospitals are struggling and the free IVF service has been withdrawn.
“On the night he was elected he talked about the campaign to get Croydon into zone four but he’s not done one thing to support that. It was pure electioneering and people are fed up.”
Mrs Jones said the issue of Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership was not coming up as a talking point during her canvassing and that she expected a tight decision again.
She said: “There’s still everything to fight for in Croydon because it’s always so close. A lot of people still haven’t thought about it yet.
“This is a different kind of election because of the issues and Brexit. Brexit is such an important thing that’s happening alongside this election.
“People are thinking about the implications of cuts to services and the way they want to leave Europe.
“In the last election we gained 6000 votes and the Tories gained 3000 so we were moving very quickly in the right direction and we believe the demographic shift is moving in our favour.”
After UKIP lost every seat it was defending in the local elections, Mrs Jones said it was important to talk to people who voted for other parties in the lead up to the general election.
She said: “We need to think about the people who voted for other parties last time such as UKIP. We are talking to these people every day and we are picking up uncertainty about how they are going to vote.
“They don’t like the fact Gavin Barwell has broken his promises and they don’t like the cuts that have affected Croydon.
“I had a conversation with a chap who voted UKIP last time because of the EU but is now not impressed with Theresa May using Brexit to whip up an election frenzy. People don’t want to see a far-right Tory government charging off so it’s all to play for.”
Croydon Central has been a Conservative seat since 2005 with Gavin Barwell looking to make it three consecutive election wins on June 8.
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