A Labour councillor who supports the Silvertown Tunnel is looking to move on from her role as representing Greenwich Peninsula to become MP for Erith and Thamesmead.
Denise Scott-McDonald tweeted today she had made the longlist and will be interviewed with the incumbent Teresa Pearce stepping down.
I am really proud 2 be on the longlist 4 parliamentary candidate 4 Erith & Thamesmead! Really looking forward 2 the interview.
— Denise Scott-McDonald (@dscottmcdonald) October 15, 2019
It’s a tall order meeting the dedication and knowledge that Teresa Pearce has shown to her constituency. Bexley is Bonkers will attest to that. He is a Tory supporter by his own admission but has nothing but good words for the Labour MP who has supported him on various issues. My dealings with her, and pretty much everyone I hear of has always been positive. She could teach many cllrs a thing or two.
Scott-McDonald is looking to leave her role as Greenwich Peninsula cllr at a time when she supports the extremely contentious Silvertown Tunnel heading into the ward. The Labour vote fell heavily in the last election and that’s before the construction lorries begin rolling in.
She recently stated the oft-repeated line that:
“We support TfL’s plan for the Silvertown Tunnel because studies show it will actually help us achieve our sustainable transport objectives, relieving the congestion and pollution currently created by use of the Blackwall Tunnel”
Yet studies contradict this and show alleviation only affects northbound queues. Southbound queues in the afternoon will gets worse – and the net effect is worse congestion across much of Greenwich borough as TfL traffic modelling shows:
She has also held the brief for public realm and currently has the brief of Air Quality, Sustainability and Transport.
Not issues the authority has excelled at shall we say. Public realm is often pretty dire in her ward as well as borough-wide, with dated design and a heavy design emphasis against pedestrians.
Her own ward has seen dangerous and off-putting design for years with no change despite millions from new developments coming into council coffers.
Communication has also been poor online with very little on social media notification of what the council is doing.
Holding the transport brief should see communications on crucial issues around recent bus cuts and rail issues (such as the Southeastern franchise problem resulting in delays to increased capacity, new stock and higher fares in SE London) yet as someone who follows and reports these issues on a very regular basis I rarely ever hear a word. Greenwich Council’s response to many consultations is not the best.
Her successor on the public realm and thus pedestrian and cycling brief has been far more pro-active at spreading the word for the authority and showing awareness of issues.
Ann-Marie Cousins, one of the new Abbey Wood councillors (located in the Erith and Thamesmead ward) has shown the way on communicating with residents with a Facebook page to keep people informed of events.
Maybe that will change and she will start to engage to a far stronger degree. It’s never been easier. We’ll have to wait and see.