Tories select former Redbridge Council leader Keith Prince as London Assembly candidate

London Assembly conservative candidate for Havering and Redbridge, Keith Prince

London Assembly conservative candidate for Havering and Redbridge, Keith Prince - Credit: Archant

Cllr Prince was chosen to fight the Havering and Redbridge seat last night after receiving more than 50 per cent of votes from local Conservatives.

Cllr Prince, who led the council from 2009 to June 2014, said he would “stand up for both boroughs” and vowed to fight against the closure of King George A&E and plans to build on Oakfields playing fields.

He also promised to campaign for improvements to Redbridge roundabout and Gallows Corner flyover in Romford, both notorious accident hotspots.

Cllr Prince stood against two other candidates, youth worker and former adviser to the Prime Minister, Shaun Bailey, and tech entrepreneur, Sarah Macken, after ten hopefuls were whittled down to three.

Cllr Prince, who represents Barkingside ward on the council, will face Labour London Assembly candidate, Ivana Bartoletti, who was selected by her party last month.

The boroughs’ current assembly member, Conservative Roger Evans, announced he would be standing down in next year’s election.

Speaking to the Recorder this morning, Cllr Prince said: “I’m a product of Havering and Redbridge. I was born in Havering and born again in Redbridge when I moved here with my family.

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“The Conservative party is the only party that will serve the needs of both so why wouldn’t I want to work my heart out for both my home towns?”

Commenting on his Labour opponent, he said: “Its’ a target seat for Labour but I am local and I know the issues. I don’t have to go and find out what they are. I suffer them everyday.

“I welcome anyone who wants to stand but for me, this is not a stepping stone. This is me fighting and defending my home turf.”

Cllr Prince also said he had the “knowledge and contacts” to help keep the A&E at King George Hospital open.

“I know members of the cabinet and MPs, and I am Conservative so they are more likely to listen to me,” he said.

He added: “If I win the election next year, I will be out on the streets, not in City Hall, standing up for issues that matter, whether it’s Oakfields, Redbridge roundabout, or the flyover at Gallows Corner.”