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Battle for the Kilburn begins

PUBLISHED: 11:14 22 October 2009 | UPDATED: 14:45 24 August 2010

Round one: Ed Fordham

Round one: Ed Fordham

THE battle lines have been drawn and the first blows landed in the war for one of the country s key seats in next years General Election, writes By Alex Wellman. Parliamentary candidates for all three major parties for the new Hampstead and Kilburn cons

THE battle lines have been drawn and the first blows landed in the war for one of the country's key seats in next years General Election, writes By Alex Wellman.

Parliamentary candidates for all three major parties for the new Hampstead and Kilburn constituency rolled up their sleeves and took part in a debate at the Tricycle Theatre in Kilburn High Road, on Thursday night, organised by the Brondesbury Residents And Tenants (BRAT).

Glenda Jackson, Labour, Ed Fordham, Liberal Democrats, and Chris Philp, Conservatives, all introduced themselves and then answered questions posed to them from a packed Dennis Jackson theatre, upstairs at the Tricycle.

Investment in Kilburn High Road, climate change, transport and MPs expenses were all hot topics as the trio made their bid to become the politician at the helm of the new constituency.

Mr Fordham spoke about the 'wall built down the middle' of Kilburn that represents the change in authority from Brent to Camden and said this election was a real opportunity to get the whole of the area represented by one body.

When quizzed about MPs expenses, he said the system does not work and lambasted politicians who claim for houses they already own and said it 'stinks'.

Mr Philp talked about the youth of the area and the need for more opportunities and employment and his desire to create more young entrepreneurs.

He also said that he would like Kilburn High Road to reclaim its place as one of the most prosperous shopping centres in the country.

Ms Jackson said that 'we are all in it together' regarding the worldwide economic downturn.

When the subject of the apparent lack of interest in Kilburn from Brent Council was raised, Ms Jackson said she was at a loss to explain why that was compared to Camden and hit out at litter close to Kilburn Square Market.

A spat erupted when Cllr Anthony Dunn, Kilburn ward, of the Liberal Democrats, accused Ms Jackson of rarely being in the area when the Highgate and Hampstead MP mentioned using empty shops as art galleries.

A furious Ms Jackson declared: "How dare you! I beg your pardon?" as Cllr Dunn tore into the former Oscar winning actress.

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