The Conservative candidate for Mayor of London will be Richmond & North Kingston MP Zac Goldsmith, after he convincingly won the vote to decide the candidacy.
Mr Goldsmith won 70% of the 9,000 or so votes cast, with London Assembly Member Andrew Boff, MEP Syed Kamall and former LB Hammersmith & Fulham leader Stephen Greenhalgh, now Deputy Mayor, all well behind.
He will face Labour’s Sadiq Khan, Lib Dem Caroline Pidgeon, Sian Berry for the Greens, Peter Whittle for UKIP, and former Respect MP George Galloway in the vote for Mayor of London.
Zac Goldsmith’s selection means that the leading candidates are both opposed to expansion at Heathrow, which could produce an interesting political situation, depending on the government response to SIr Howard Davies’ report which came out strongly in favour of a new runway at the UK’s hub airport.
Heathrow Hub, the group backing the extension of the northern runway, took the opportunity to give all the Mayoral candidates a “political way out” by enabling expansion at Heathrow using their plan.
Jock Lowe, director of Heathrow Hub, said: “All the London mayor candidates, like us, oppose Heathrow Airport’s own Third Runway Plan. Our independent plan to extend the runway, currently being reviewed by the Department of Transport, offers a political way out for all parties. The extended runway was awarded a ‘silver medal’ by Sir Howard Davies. It brings no new communities into the noise footprint, includes a noise mitigation plan and is cheaper and less disruptive to build, while still providing the new capacity required. We enjoy good relations with all the candidates and we will be writing to them to congratulate them on their selections and to reassure them that it is possible to deliver vital airport expansion without the political turmoil of Heathrow Airport’s Third Runway
See coverage from the BBC.