Lewisham by-election: back the socialist alternative

UNDER THE banner “Don’t vote for cuts, vote for Ian Page” the Socialist Party launched its campaign in the Bellingham ward council by-election on 24 March in Lewisham, south east London.

This election is being held against the background of a growing opposition to public sector cuts. Over the next four years the Labour council plans to carry out £88 million of cuts including closing the local library in Sydenham and cutting and privatising the early years service in Bellingham.

Socialist Party member Ian Page will be the Socialist Party/Lewisham People Before Profit candidate. Between 1990 and 2010 Ian was a Socialist councillor in the Telegraph Hill ward in Lewisham. In all that time he consistently voted and campaigned against cuts to public services.

With Ian’s help local tenants defeated the plans to privatise council housing in New Cross Gate, and Lewisham Hospital’s A&E was saved after big public protests, again with Ian’s active support.

If Ian is elected on 24 March this will be a massive boost to the anti-cuts movement in Lewisham. The campaign got off to an excellent start with Ian leading a march of a group of local residents from Bellingham to the Lewisham anti-cuts carnival. They were protesting against the cuts to the early years service.

Chris Newby