Labour Party win mock election held at Kilburn hustings

Tulip Siddiq, Labour's parliamentary candidate for Hampstead and Kilburn speaking at the South Kilbu

Tulip Siddiq, Labour's parliamentary candidate for Hampstead and Kilburn speaking at the South Kilburn Youth Hustings where she won the winning vote - Credit: Archant

The Labour Party came out victorious at a mock election hustings in Kilburn leaving the Liberal Democrats and UKIP trailing behind in last place.

Tulip Siddiq, parliamentary candidate for Labour, beat Rebecca Johnson, Green PC who came second, Conservative’s Simon Marcus, Libdem’s Maajid Nawaz, and UKIP candidate Magnus Neilsen after a vote was held last week following the hustings in Granville Community Centre in Granville Road.

The candidates are all fighting to win the seat for Hampstead and Kilburn, the most marginal in the country, which was won by Glenda Jackson in 2010 by only 47 votes.

Labour won 41 votes at the hustings, the Green Party won 23, Conservative Party received seven votes and the Libdems and UKIP won three each.

Tulip Siddiq said: “It’s amazing, I hope it’s repeated again on May 7. What I really want is to represent the area I grew up in.”

The South Kilburn “Youth Hustings” was organised by SK Voices and supported by South Kilburn Trust, with Ros Dunn acting as chair of the panel.

Questions were asked in advance on Twitter and by the audience on a range of issues including the NHS, the regeneration of Kilburn High Street, housing, benefit sanctions, education, and the environment.

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Mr Neilsen was heckled for answering almost every question citing “unrestricted immigration”, while Cllr Marcus was booed when he answered repealing the benefit caps with an emphatic no.

Mr Nawaz was well received on the floor with his responses, particularly on housing, education and crime but it wasn’t reflected in the final count.

He said: “I was rather puzzled by that result considering the very warm response I got from almost everyone afterwards. Unfortunately, these things usually have a great deal more to do with the national standing of any party, and less so with the local candidate.”

Edyta Blaszczyk, housing manager at Lift, a charity supporting homeless people, said: “It was quite interesting but I would like to see more concrete responses on some of the questions. We are seeing people in extreme poverty coming to us on weekly basis, working on zero hour contracts with no other option but to starve or be sanctioned.”

The audience were invited to vote free food, provided by Granville Community Kitchen, and served by young volunteers was distributed during the count.

George Allawi of the South Kilburn Trust said: “It was great to see it happening and have such a good turn out from the community who came here to have their voices heard.”