I'm Ellie Cox, a Councillor for Lower Morden and the City Hall Spokeswoman and GLA candidate for Merton & Wandsworth Conservatives.
I’m a Londoner living in my flat in Wimbledon. Family is at the heart of what is important to me.
As a child, it was my sport that defined me. I dreamt of being a top badminton player. I achieved my dreams and became the top female British junior representing England internationally. As we were a low-income family this was only made possible by the Conservative party, who under former Prime Minister John Major, increased funding and grants to sports bodies and local authorities which helped pay for my training and tournaments. Sports should be accessible to all. Sport gives people healthier lifestyles, increases social inclusion, gives people useful life skills, and can reduce crime. I will work to increase funding for community facilities to enable this.
The opportunities I got through sports taught me how to focus on goals and be successful. And opportunity is what I would like every Londoner to have.
Leaving sport at 19, I wanted to find a new career. I attended an event where I met Margaret Thatcher. She gave me valuable advice. She said self-responsibility will open the gateway to opportunity and success for me.
I followed Margaret Thatcher’s advice and worked hard to find a job at a major bank. Today I am leading a London team helping small and mid-sized businesses grow. I know how business works and how they are funded. I have seen the impact technology is making to innovate business and city infrastructure. I have 15 years’ experience of supporting businesses to employ more Londoners, innovate and create economic growth in our capital, making it a more desirable, vibrant place to live.
The lack of affordable housing is a significant problem. We need suitable and reasonably priced housing, enabling people from London to live and work here. We must make homeownership a reality for Londoners. As Mayor of London Boris Johnson built twice as many homes in 8 years as Sadiq Khan has. It is the Conservatives that have home ownership at the heart of their principles. I will work with the private sector to understand how we can incentivise housebuilders to build more homes and ensure the planning system works for developers.
Travel around London needs to be inexpensive for people so it’s easy to travel between home and work. I am an advocate of cleaner air but extending ULEZ to greater London is not the way to achieve it. London’s most polluting areas are within the current ULEZ. Reducing pollution and achieving cleaner air would be best achieved through a move to a fully electric bus fleet. Currently, only 4.4% of London's bus fleet is electric, if London had a fully electric bus fleet the reduction in emissions would be equivalent to a total reduction of 20% which is the same as taking 1 million cars off the road. The Conservatives on the Greater London Assembly also propose a Pollution Hotspots Fund to fund and tackle poor air quality where it is needed most.
Incentivising people to make better environmental choices will deliver a sustainable London. We should offer rewards for eco-friendly-choices, like using public transport, and installing energy-efficient home upgrades, in order to cultivate responsibility, and create a cleaner, greener, city for all.
Restoring a sense of safety for London residents is crucial. Collaborating with local police and the Mayor of London, I'll improve policing. I'll actively engage in initiatives for enhancing women's safety. It makes me sad that women tell me they feel unsafe walking in our borough’s streets at night. Better street lighting and an increased police presence are vital necessities.
We need better street lighting and more police on our streets to reduce crime
I intend to apply my business expertise at City Hall, exploring avenues for London's economic expansion. Our goal is to reinstate London as the foremost global city, embodying excellence.