The Labour Party Parliamentary candidates for Westminster and Battersea took part in a photo call on Friday 2nd June at Nine Elms to join the calls for Transport for London and other public authorities to abandon plans to spend up to £100m for a new Thames crossing between Nine Elms and Pimlico some 350 yards from the existing Vauxhall Bridge. See photos attached
The photo call was organised by North Battersea Alliance against the Bridge which is also calling for no further taxpayer’s monies to be spent on the project.
The local campaign considers that a new Thames River crossing at this location is not needed and if funds are available they should be spent on new crossings further east of the Blackwall Tunnel. The official plans show that it would save cyclists 1 minute and pedestrians 7 minutes. There is widespread opposition to this use of public money on both sides of the river.
Marsha de Cordova, Labour Party candidate for Battersea, and Ibrahim Dogus, Labour Party candidate for Westminster, joined hands on the Thames path - with Vauxhall Bridge in the background and with a slogan " No to £100m Nine Elms vanity bridge".
Spencer Barnshaw, BWTUC Secretary and spokesperson for the Alliance , said “What we have here are property developers attempting to dictate that up to £100m of very scarce public money be spent on a new crossing a few minutes away from the existing Vauxhall Bridge.
Vauxhall Bridge already has two pedestrian footpaths and a two way two lane full width cycleway. Unlike further east in London there is no demand from local people for a new Thames river crossing on the very good grounds that there is absolutely no need for it.
It is a scandal that Wandsworth Council has already spent over £100,000 on this project at a time when they are cutting services and jobs and terms and conditions of employment.
Over the last four years in Wandsworth unions has campaigned against sale of school playing fields, abandoning the meals on wheels service, closure of libraries, adventure playgrounds, OneO'clock clubs, cuts to youth provision, school crossing patrols, and against the pay to play schemes like to one in Battersea Park.
This photocall is to show the opposition on both banks of the Thames to any further public spending on this vanity project being promoted by Wandsworth Tory Council and to pledge that monies saved will be put to better use.”
Marsha de Cordova PPC for Battersea said:
Unlike further east the last thing that is needed is another bridge from the Battersea side of the Thames. My message is quite simple instead of spending the expected £100 million on another bridge spend it on projects that matter to local people. There is still time to abandon this vanity project and use the money on youth services, housing and social care. "
Contact: North Battersea Alliance Against the Bridge press officer 07921 289880.