Local politics is a cult with a tiny number of activists.1 As a result, local politics relies heavily on these people to finance it, the most important of whom are councillors along with their families and friends. Any significant downturn in their financial status immediately effects their local party.
The 2022 election was a disaster for Romford Conservatives because they were defeated after 20 lucrative years. Damian White and his cabinet lost tens of thousands of pounds in allowances each. Other Conservatives lost smaller, but significant, amounts. Hundreds of thousands of pounds in allowances no longer flow to the Conservatives.2 Romford’s Conservative councillors suffered a lifestyle changing event in May, 2022.3 This reduced their enthusiasm for financing the party.
On the other side of the coin Ray Morgon’s HRA4 have finance they’ve never had before. HRA is a federation which doesn’t have the costs of a political party. Their 2022 poster campaign did, however, indicate a direction of travel. So, it’s possible HRA will become a borough political party. HRA’s junior partner, Labour, have had an increase in councillor allowances with two cabinet posts. This should improve their campaigning.
These unexpected financial consequences could reshape Havering’s political landscape. The Conservatives are starved of money, which could expose them to the mercy of wealthy backers. Another scenario is activists will promote hobby-horses, which might end up being extremism of one kind or another.
1 John and Philippa Crowder; Oscar and Gillian Ford; Dilip and Nisha Patel. These three families are an extreme example of the cult-like atmosphere. Oscar and Gillian are the most powerful husband/wife politicians since Arthur and Margaret Latham in the 1990s.
2 Romford councillors pick up the basic £10,412 p.a (£239,476 in total so they aren’t entirely bereft and may have a bit left over to contribute towards the party – if they want.)
3 Due to Damian’s pot-of-gold policy virtually every Conservative has lost at least £3,000 per year.
4 HRA = Havering Residents Association
2 thoughts on “Havering’s 2022 Election: an Unexpected Outcome”
Labour won gooshays with a smaller percentage of The vote in 2022 than 2018 with the Harold hill party The Tories and the residents association splitting the vote as they are keen to point out , if Jan sergeant stood, not only would she have won , she’d have gif anyone on a joint ticket additional votes the way Denis oflynn use to be able to get people elected with him in 2002/ 2010 and 2018
Thank you for comment
Without RA support there would have only been one Tory Administration between 2002-2022.