Election Hustings for Mayor of Lewisham

The Forest Hill Society and The Sydenham Society invite you to ask your questions to candidates for Mayor of Lewisham on Monday 23rd April at 7:30pm. At the Sydenham Centre, 44 Sydenham Road.


Do people, who want to attend, need to forward any notes of attendance, or register, or they can just walk in? I want to come but not sure if I can make it.

Just turn up. And questions will be taken randomly from the floor, no pre-selected questions.

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Thank you.

Do questions have to be in a specific format?

Questions should be directed to all candidates rather than to a specific candidate, and questions should be concise and to-the-point (not speeches). Beyond that there is no restriction on questions of which I’m aware.

My personal recommendation is to keep questions as short as possible so that you get an answer to the question you ask rather than general remarks on the topic. Although sometimes candidates will be right not to answer question that are too specific - for example a specific undecided planning application. In this case it may be better to ask questions more generally about their view on planning issues - perhaps with reference to a specific development - by way of an example.


Thank you very much Michael! Understood.

I have one more question… Can those hustings be recorded, stenographed and published, on this forum for example or anywhere else, so more people will know what candidates think, what are their views on various matters. I can stenograph, done it in the past from recordings, in English as well, happy to do that if needed.

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As an experiment, I live-transcribed the last hustings onto SE23.life.

I’m a faster typer but struggled to give a full account of everything that was said. I think if there were two live typists (taking turns to transcribe each candidate’s response) it might just work.

Transcribing a recording, as you suggested, might be a better option.

Or perhaps a live broadcast using Periscope. The limitation with smartphone video broadcast is the sound - it won’t be clear enough to pick up both audience questions and candidate responses.

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Or maybe to videorecord the hustings, put on YouTube and post here - the easiest way? At least we will have some info for wide audience to be aware in order to make an informative choice at the elections.

I thought your accounting at the national election hustings was both fair and accurate to all candidates. A good summary of each actor’s main points.


The event is expected to be recorded by Sydenham Radio and available on the internet afterwards. But it is much easier to hear in person.


Thank you Michael!

Dear Forest Hill and Sydenham Societies. Damien Egan told me today about your hustings and I am grateful to him for letting me know. Why was I not informed earlier? Is this an attempt to exclude me or just incompetence? As the representative of Lewisham’s most active opposition (to Labour) party and the party which came second to Labour in the 2014 elections when measured in percentage votes per candidate I am surprised that this has happened.
For those interested in what I (and other candidates) said at previous hustings I recommend watching: www.tinyurl.com/HustingsVid and/or www.tinyurl.com/EducationVid
Yours, John Hamilton, candidate for Lewisham People Before Profit
PS There are seven candidates in total, have you invited all the others?

@JohnPeopleBeforeProf We have not invited all the candidates as we have a cut off of 5% demonstated in one of the last borough or constituency wide elections. In 2014 People Before Profit got more than 5% in the mayoral election and therefore you should have been included.

First, if you are available you are welcome to join the panel. If you would like more details you are welcome to contact me at michael@fhsoc.com (I’ll also send you my phone number by Private Message and try to email you, if I can find your email address)

Secondly, please accept my sincere apologies for this oversight. You should have been invited as soon as we were aware you were a candidate, given that you received more than 5% in the last mayoral election.

I can confirm that the panel tomorrow will be:

Ross Archer, Conservative Party
Duwayne Brooks, Independent
Damien Egan, Labour and Co-operative
John Hamilton, Lewisham People Before Profit
Chris Maines, Liberal Democrats

We have invited:
John Coughlin, Green Party
But have not had a response.

We have not invited one other candidate because he (or his party) did not get more than 5% in previous elections in the borough:
Will Donnelly, Democrats and Veterans
But he is standing in the election for mayor.

(If anybody wants an explanation of the 5% rule, I will be happy to explain, but it might be best in another thread)

Dear Michael,

Thanks for clearing up the confusion and I look forward to the hustings tomorrow.

Here is Will Donnelly’s email address:


He is representing the Democrats and Veterans Party, an offshoot from UKIP mainly in Essex.

Best wishes,


If like me you were unable to attend the Hustings last night, here is a handy recording made by Sydenham Radio.


Listening to it now. Its surprisingly good quality. Though sometimes hard to tell who is talking.

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