Leyton Leytonstone News

Labour’s Calvin Bailey warns of right-wing threat as he wins in Leyton and Wanstead

The former RAF commander from South London won 20,755 votes last night amid a turnout of 59.9% in the constituency formerly held by John Cryer, reports Marco Marcelline

Calvin Bailey (centre) accepts his win, flanked by Lib Dem candidate Tara Copeland (left) and Conservative Gloria Croxall (right)

Calvin Bailey, the Labour candidate for Leyton and Wanstead warned of the danger of the hard right as he accepted his sizeable win last night.

The former RAF commander from South London won 20,755 votes last night amid a turnout of 59.9%.

The comments came as the right-wing Reform Party’s vote surged across the UK yesterday, with leader Nigel Farage winning in Clacton. The party has gained a total of four seats, and over four million votes.

In a stark warning which punctuated the end of his speech, he said: “But in amongst this, we should note the rise of the Right. I have warned throughout this campaign that if we fail, if we squabble and allow internecine politics to inhibit our delivery of the changes we have promised our people, then those people will turn to the right and that we cannot allow.”

He started his speech by thanking the returning officer, counting team, police, and previous MP John Cryer. Bailey also expressed gratitude to his family who “will continue to serve with me in the years ahead”.

Complimenting the constituency’s diversity, he said he felt “at home” in the constituency – and joked: “Like my team Arsenal, when us South-Londoners come north of the river we flourish together.”

He added: “This is a vote for a Labour Party that is focused on the priorities of working people. We will fight for economic security, cheaper bills, safer streets, the NHS back on its feet, secure borders and better opportunities for our children.”

Bailey continued: “I believe that politicians and politics should serve the public. It’s time to end the chaos and dysfunction in Westminster and start to rebuild our country together. I will get on with the job that you have sent me to Westminster to do.”

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He finished his speech by saying: “Tomorrow our work begins.”

Bailey was selected by Labour’s National Executive Committee (NEC) to stand in Leyton and Wanstead on 29th May, two days after Cryer announced his intention to step down at the election. 

The emergency nature of his selection meant that local party members were not consulted on his candidacy before he was picked, a move which has been described by some as an “imposition”. 

In an email sent to party members, seen by the Echo, Bailey described the way he was selected as “not ideal” and promised to “work to ensure [members] feel that the right result was achieved.”

During the campaign, Bailey has called for more investment in youth services to combat knife crime.

Speaking at a hustings event in Leytonstone last week, Bailey spoke of his close friendship with the brother of Stephen Lawrence and how he used to carry a knife for protection in the aftermath of his racist murder and the murders of four other young people he knew.

“I am very embarrassed to say that when those murders happened…that I carried a knife because like the rest of my friends I didn’t know what alternatives there were. 

He continued: “And the reason why I’m so passionate about these things…is because I’m able to relate to those people [carrying a knife] and say to them, ‘we need hope, we need a way out that gives you a path that prevents you from putting a weapon in your hands.”

The full results are provided below with the candidates names in alphabetical order.

Mahtab Anwar Aziz, Workers Party – 1,633

Calvin Bailey, Labour Party – 20,755

Simon Mark Bezer, Rejoin EU – 244

Tara Copeland, Liberal Democrat – 2,815

Gloria Croxall, Conservative Party, 4,846

Shanell Johnson, Independent, 4,173

Charlotte Lafferty, Green Party, 6,791

David Kenton Sandground, Reform Party, 2,475

A total of 208 votes were rejected. 60 were rejected because votes were given for more than one candidate, while 148 were rejected because they were unmarked or void for uncertainty.

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