London local elections 2022: parties race to address cost of living crisis

Households across London are finding their wallets empty

Households across London are finding their wallets empty - Credit: André Langlois

Londoners will decide the fate of more than 1,800 seats in the 32 boroughs at the “all out” local elections on May 5.

With little less than a month to go, the cost of living crisis is at the centre of the debate.

The elections are the first test for the Tories after their mini-budget, the war in Ukraine and the partygate scandal, with soaring energy prices and inflation rising.  

The Conservatives are pledging to tackle crime and violence, the climate change and to keep council tax low.

In his spring statement, Rishi Sunak said he was doubling the Household Support Fund to £1bn.

“This will allow local authorities to help those in need in their local areas,” he said.

Sir Keir Starmer launched Labour’s “on your side” campaign in Bury on March 31, urging voters to “send a message” to the Conservatives “that they can’t ignore”.

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“A message that Britain deserves better than their pathetic, their miserable response to the cost of living crisis.”

Claiming families will be £2,620 worse off this year, Starmer pledged a windfall tax on oil and gas companies and to “use that money so that people can have up to £600 off their bills”.

The Liberal Democrats also accused the Tories of breaking their promises by raising taxes and are calling for a cut to VAT (from 20% to 17.5%) for one year, to save families £600. 

Ed Davey, Lib Dem leader, launching the “vote For a fair deal” campaign, said: “Right across the country, people are turning to the Liberal Democrats because they know we will listen and stand up for you and your community.”

The Greens are also hoping to increase their share of seats and launched their “fairer greener communities” campaign, promising to insulate people’s home to tackle the cost of living crisis.

Carla Denyer, Green Party co-leader, said: “Imagine - a warm, snug home even on the coldest days. Little to no heating bill at all. A neighbourhood that has almost zero emissions. 

“That’s what Greens are pushing for here alongside residents.”

The 2018 London local elections saw a historic success for Labour, which now controls 21 councils.