Following the resignation of Boris Johnson from Parliament, a by-election has been called in the Uxbridge & South Ruislip constituency for the 20th July. We’ve spoken local man Steve Gardner, who is the Social Democratic Party (SDP) candidate for election.
This may be the first time some people have had a chance to vote for the SDP. Can you introduce the party and say a bit about what it stands for.
The SDP is a patriotic, economically left-leaning and socially right leaning, culturally traditional party. We’ve been going for some time and these days, we’re a grass roots party with no vested interests. We have long term policies and genuinely want to improve things for the better. After feeling politically homeless, I was directed to the SDP and I liked what I saw!
Can you introduce yourself to the people of Uxbridge & South Ruislip, and also tell us what got you involved in politics?
My name is Steve Gardner and I’ve lived in the constituency for over 25 years. I served in the British Army for five years and was operational during the First Gulf War. I was also an Army Cadet Officer for 15 years, leaving as a Captain. My entire family reside in the constituency with the vast majority of us in Hillingdon and it really is a great place to live. I just want to make it better and safer. I’m sure those who live in the surrounding areas of Ickenham, Yiewsley, Cowley and West Drayton would agree.
I never really had any interest in becoming a politician but I was urged to do so by family and friends. The system is broken; politicians no longer seem to work for the people and that needs to change. To do this you have to join the system. To be elected as the representative of your community is one of the highest honours one can achieve and shouldn’t be taken lightly. We urgently need to shake the system up for the better.
If elected what are the local challenges you want to champion?
My three main election issues are to:
- Scrap the ULEZ extension. It’s a stealth tax that will have a minimal effect on the environment. It’s just a way of making easy money and it’s always the motorist who has to pay the price. It’s outrageous that it’s got this far and people are rightfully angry.
- To fight crime through improved pro-active policing. The politicians have massively let down the Police who have been unable to carry out their jobs properly. They should be supported, backed and encouraged to pro-actively police our communities to make them safer. Everyone should be able to feel safe and secure.
- To have affordable and suitable housing that prioritises local residents. The main reason that the community spirit is absent is because people can’t afford to live where they grew up which means they move out of the area. They should have priority over local housing. Communities that bond are safer communities for all.
How can people find out more and get involved in your campaign?
I’m confident that people will read our policies and agree with the majority of them and hopefully support us. We’re the only real credible alternative to the same old show that gets played out every few years. It’s time for change.