IF a Tory tree falls in Hendon on Thursday, it could affect Camden’s political eco-system, for it won’t just be Labour members in Barnet who are keen to get first sight of the result. With Matthew Offord becoming a long-shot with the bookmakers to hold onto the constituency he won for the Conservatives by just 106 votes in 2010, Labour’s Andrew Dismore is in line to return to the House of Commons five years after he lost his seat. In those five years, Dismore has filled the time as London Assembly member for Barnet and Camden. He’s had some good duels with Boris Johnson (which could be re-run again and again in parliament post May 7) at City Hall but he always seemed to have a return to the big house in mind. “I’m enjoying working on the assembly,” he said when he announced his interest in running in Hendon again. “But the more you do it, the more you realise how limited you are by national policy You are never going to have the same platform for speaking out on these things than when speaking out as an MP. I have a lot of unfinished business.”
If he is elected on Thursday, however, his days at the assembly, like Boris’s, will be numbered. While Barnet Labour members do not buy into the idea that it’s Camden’s turn to provide a candidate across the two-borough constituency, at least two familiar faces, a Haywardite and a Tulipista, will put them in the running to be his successor. Former Labour councillor Mike Katz is in the game for thos, but friends of current councillor Sue Vincent, the former deputy leader at the Town Hall, say that she too has made up her mind to also enter the race if the situation becomes vacant.
And that’s not all. The gossip mill has it that West Hampstead councillor Phil Rosenberg, elected for the first time last year, is also looking to put himself in the frame.