Generation Sian

BACK in conference season, Green Party mayoral councillor Sian Berry was sounding a bit downbeat about how the Evening Standard would cover the upcoming London elections, suggesting the newspaper was already swooning over Zac Goldsmith.

“The Evening Standard won’t say a word against him, which is interesting and worrying,” she said. “They definitely pride themselves on being influential at the election. They’ve been quite balanced about the other candidates but for instance when the Green Party selected me I made a speech in which I said bad things about the other candidates – did they report a word I said against Zac? No, they didn’t. The fact he’s voted against renewable energy, voted against welfare cuts in parliament, I mentioned those things, but you won’t find that in the Standard. So, it does seem like he is being anointed by the Establishment.”

Perhaps the two-page feature interview with her published in the Standard yesterday will be more reassuring for the Highgate councillor.

That said the feedback I picked up had been interestingly contrast. Supporters felt she came across very well, living the struggle of Generation Rent and showing to really understand the nuts and bolts of the crisis and divide in London’s housing.

But there are sympathisers who felt it was the perfect piece for a Zac-supporting newspaper to run, appearing warm in tone but ultimately casting her as a cat woman in an attic flat, the kind of person that suits heading back to the outer boroughs would never countenance as a serious choice to be Mayor.

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