Tuesday, 25 March 2014

By-Election Preview: 25 March 2014

City of London Corporation: caused by the death of Common Councilman Robin Eve.

Saint Vedast Foster Lane
  © Copyright Ian Rob and licensed for
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Last week I described the arcane electoral structure of the Corporation of London, with its "residential" and "business" wards.  Portsoken, in which the Labour candidate in last week's by-election became the first ever official party candidate to win election to the Corporation, is a residential ward, while Cheap is one of the business wards with virtually no resident population.  The ward runs along the northern side of Cheapside from Old Jewry to King Edward Street.

The 2013 election in this ward was fought between the three City establishment candidates and three candidates associated with the Young Briton's Foundation, a right-wing think tank with links to the Conservative party and the American neo-con movement.  The Establishment candidates won easily.

Fighting this by-election are five non-party candidates: Nick Bensted-Smith, a partner at the financial firm Sarasin and Partners; Colin Gregory, who is on the council of the Hampstead Garden Suburb residents' association; Peter Hardwick, who gives an address in Clacton-on-Sea; Robert Pitcher, a lawyer with Eversheds specialising in finance and energy; and John Spanner TD, who was a Common Councilman for Farringdon Without ward from 1984 until losing his seat in the 2013 election, apparently after falling out with the meat traders at Smithfield Market.  I would assume from this summary that Spanner is the Establishment candidate.

Parliamentary constituency: Cities of London and Westminster
GLA constituency: City and East
ONS Travel to Work Area: London
Postcode districts: EC1A, EC2R, EC2V

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