London mayoral race 2021: What did the audience think of the debate?

By Sam Francis
BBC News, London

picture caption(Left to proper:) The Liberal Democrats’ Luisa Porritt, Labour’s Sadiq Khan, Sean Bailey of the Conservatives and Green Party candidate Sian Berry answered a variety of questions

Candidates for the 4 largest events operating to be mayor of London clashed in Sunday’s debate.

Prompted by questions from an audience of six specifically chosen undecided voters, the candidates set out their stall on policing, transport and the capital’s restoration from the pandemic.

‘Emotions deliver realness’

media caption‘What will the subsequent mayor do about knife crime?’

Christian Douglas, a youth employee from south London, requested all the 4 politicians how they might sort out knife crime.

“I’d say the candidates answered possibly 80% of my questions, however they have been restricted by time constraints,” he mentioned.

“But I used to be happy all of them agreed about the want for long-term youth providers. Inconsistent providers could be extra damaging to youngsters.

“What was reassuring was that they put their solutions on the document. We’re going to carry them to account. I’ve already been in contact with the campaigns.

“It’s good after they get you to see them getting private and speaking about their observe document. That’s when the actual character of the particular person come out of them. Emotions deliver realness.

“I did not know a lot about the Lib Dems earlier than, however I preferred Luisa Porritt’s responses throughout the board.

“She actually impressed. She got here with inventive concepts and that is what we want.”

Mr Douglas, who has beforehand voted Conservative at nationwide degree, mentioned he remained undecided on who to vote for.


What’s taking place: On 6 May, individuals will vote to elect a mayor and 25 members of the London Assembly. Together they kind the Greater London Authority, which governs the capital.

Why does it matter? The mayor has a £19bn price range, is accountable for transport and policing and has a task in housing, planning and the atmosphere. The London Assembly holds the mayor to account. Find out extra right here.

‘There was some extended mudslinging’

picture copyrightStephen Yates

Stephen Yates requested the candidates how they might enhance life for cyclists, and what their plans have been for making a greener London.

He mentioned he felt that some of the candidates’ plans to enhance journey in the metropolis have been “not in alignment with their environmental insurance policies”.

He mentioned: “In explicit, I felt Shaun Bailey dodged the query. He repeated his intention to make buses electrical, which can enhance air high quality however won’t make roads safer and encourage extra cyclists.

“I really feel like Sian Berry would actually push for radical change. Her general pledge to make London carbon-zero by 2030 is the right degree of urgency for the international local weather disaster.

“Also, Sadiq appeared to have balanced insurance policies and to be very obsessed with all of them.

“There have been some extended sections of mudslinging between Sadiq and Shaun which I did not think have been significantly useful.

Mr Yates, who voted Lib Dem at the final election, mentioned he’ll “proceed to scrutinise all the manifestos

“But I’m fairly sure that following the debate, my allegiance is now with Sian’s Green Party,” he mentioned.

‘Caring is one factor, implementing is one other’

Zoe Firth, who works with home abuse survivors, requested how the candidates meant to forestall gender-based violence.

She mentioned she was impressed with the candidates.

“Their understanding of the concern was good,” she mentioned.

“I used to be glad that all of them addressed how gender-based violence is a societal concern brought on by misogyny and patriarchal norms.

“But I’d have preferred extra time to deal with the concrete particulars of their plans to deal with gender-based violence.

“Caring is one factor, implementing is one other.

“I additionally loved listening to the experience and experiences of my fellow Londoners on the panel; it was their perception that set a productive, reflective tone for the dialogue.

Ms Firth, who voted Labour at the final basic election, mentioned she is “at the moment deciding between Sian Berry and Sadiq Khan” for mayor.

‘They took on board my considerations’

Pascale Mitchell, a mom of 4 dwelling in a three-bedroom home in Bermondsey, south-east London, requested how the candidates would enhance London’s housing.

She mentioned her query went unanswered. Instead “the candidates have been debating amongst themselves about their very own insurance policies on housing”.

“I think they took on board my considerations and have been sympathetic to the scenario however no reply was given to my query,” she mentioned.

Ms Mitchell needed the candidates to decide to constructing extra social housing,

She mentioned: “Living in London, it’s not possible to purchase a house giant sufficient for my household even on an revenue of two common salaries coming into the family.

“I believed Sian Berry was the candidate who supplied the greatest options to my concern.

“Sadiq Khan and Shaun Bailey each got here from council properties however neither supplied an actual resolution to my scenario of overcrowding and affordability.”

Ms Mitchell, who has beforehand been a member of the Labour get together and campaigned for the Lib Dems, mentioned she stays undecided about how she is going to vote.

‘I discovered the complete factor fairly scripted’

Suzanne Sullivan, who has pushed a London black cab for 9 years, says the capital’s roads have gotten extra congested. She mentioned the rollout of Low-Traffic Neighbourhoods had made issues worse.

She requested how the candidates would open up roads to get “London working once more”, however mentioned no candidates answered her totally.

“I discovered the complete factor fairly scripted from begin to end,” she mentioned.

“They took it severely, they [just] did not give you a lot of a solution. I preferred listening to them rather a lot of them, to be honest.

“I felt Shaun and Sadiq have been arguing amongst themselves fairly than involving [themselves] in the debate.

“From what I can inform from politics, it isn’t about what they need for the individuals, it is extra about their private acquire and making their egos look higher.”

She mentioned the debate “helped make up my thoughts who I’m not voting for – Sadiq Khan”.

Ms Sullivan, who has beforehand voted Conservative, mentioned she stays undecided however is “leaning in direction of” voting for Shaun Bailey. If “all the candidates had an equal likelihood” she mentioned she would think about voting for Sian Berry or Laurence Fox.

Watch the full debate on the iPlayer right here.

One audience member, Mo Bello, was contacted however was unable to participate on this article.

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