Stonecot byelection to take place on Thursday
The runners in next week's Stonecot byelection have made themselves known and include a self-proclaimed community activist, a "fresh-faced" politician who won't toe the party line and a full time mum who says she is not afraid to get stuck-in.
Former Liberal Democrat councillor Dr Brendan Hudson resigned from his seat after taking a position on the board of the new Sutton Clinical Commissioning Group, so voters in Stonecot face a byelection on Thursday, December 6.
Freelance social interviewer Nick Emmerson will be hoping to retain the seat for the Liberal Democrats. He is a member of the neighbourhood watch, volunteers for Meals on Wheels and played a role in setting up Friends of Daisy Field and the Friends of Sutton Life Centre Groups.
The married father who was brought up in the area and went to local schools said: "I see myself as a community activist rather than a career politician. I will work hard to gain the confidence of the residents across Stonecot.
"Sutton’s Liberal Democrat Council has a long and proud record of standing up for its residents, and I am eager to join the team."
Graham Jarvis will represent the Conservatives. Mr Jarvis, 43, is a self-employed journalist and PR consultant and has lived in the borough for 12 years.
A Tory spokesman said: "Graham believes that in local politics people come first and that Stonecot needs an independent voice representing the ward. He argues that one more Lib Dem councillor, simply adding yet another to the 42-strong Lib Dem Group, will not provide the residents with the voice they need.
"What Stonecot needs, says Graham, is a fresh-faced councillor with new ideas, not just another one toeing the party line."
Mr Jarvis says his three priorities are making sure Sutton is safe with effective local policing, saving St Helier Hospital from what he calls "effective closure" and making Sutton Life Centre pay for itself.
The Labour candidate will be mum-of-four and former teacher Bonnie Craven. Mrs Craven has lived in Stonecot for seven years and says blocking the privatisation of NHS services, opposing proposed cuts to emergency services and encouraging more jobs and help for local firms are among her key campaign issues.
She added: "Stonecot Ward is full of people who see their cost of living going up, whilst the Conservatives give the wealthiest in the most affluent areas a tax cut. The ward is full of commuters suffering from the last fare increase who now face another one.
"This byelection is an opportunity to send a message to the Conservative Government and the Mayor of London, that enough is enough.
"Our Liberal Democrat Council also has the wrong priorities. It supports an incinerator in the borough, when instead it should use its clout to help people switch to save energy bills and ensure anyone who works for it directly or indirectly is paid the London Living wage so work pays, even for the least well-off."
The UKIP representative will be Jeremy Wraith. Mr Wraith is 74, a retired aeronautical engineer and lives in Carshalton. He says his main issue locally is protecting St Helier Hospital.
Mr Wraith said: "The main thing for me nationally is that I don't think taxpayers are getting all the information they should about how their money is spent. 80 per cent of our legislation comes from the EU and it costs the council tax payer a tremendous amount. There should be someone on the council who is keeping an eye on that."
The Green Party will be represented by former Liberal Democrat councillor Joan Hartfield.