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‘John has given voice to people at the bottom’
Wednesday, 29 June 2011
By By Lindsay Burns
A SEASONED people’s champion from Telegraph Hill has been nominated for an Our Heroes award for his tireless fight to save public services.
In the last local election, more than 6,000 people supported 22 candidates from Lewisham People Before Profit (LPBP), which was founded by John Hamilton.
The party set itself up as an alternative to the mainstream in pledging to oppose the cuts handed down to town halls by central Government.
John, who lives with partner Kate Pearce and children Rosa, 15, and William, 11, started campaigning in 1999 when he fought against council charges for nurseries. He then campaigned against a leisure centre closure, demanded more schools and fought for the preservation of historical buildings and libraries.
In 2008, he set up LPBP to give people a grass-roots political party that fought, as he saw it, for the interests of the borough, not a national party.
John has been nominated for an Our Heroes award as part of this newspaper’s annual campaign to highlight and reward the good work of South Londoners.
He said: “LPBP was the coming together of people in Lewisham who had been involved in different campaigns.
“One of the main issues that concerned people in Lewisham is that services we think should be run by the town hall are being contracted out to private companies - for profit.
“Carnival Against Cuts - the demonstration we organised against cuts to services in February - was one of the biggest Lewisham has ever seen.”
The Ladywell Baths campaign in 2005 led to the council scrapping plans to close the swimming pool in Lewisham High Street.
Most recently, John has been campaigning against the closure of five libraries in the borough.
In a joint statement after nominating John, LPBP members Ray Woolford and Alexia Wdowski said: “John has succeeded in uniting a whole community, giving hope and aspiration to many.
“He has created a new way to campaign, and continues to give a voice to the people at the very bottom.”
Copyright Tindle Newspapers Ltd Tuesday, 18 June 2013
Other Our Heroes Awards 2011:
Sir Ray Tindle
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