Review into Conservative Party’s operation in London ahead of mayoral election

Susan Hall (l) and Greg Hands (r)
Susan Hall (l) and Greg Hands (r) Credit: PA

Conservative chiefs have launched an internal review of the party’s operation in London.

The review, confirmed by party chairman Greg Hands on Wednesday, comes as the Tories prepare for an election campaign against London mayor Sadiq Khan next year.

Susan Hall was selected earlier this year as the Conservative Party’s candidate for the mayoral contest in May.

Opponents have highlighted her backing for Liz Truss’s ill-fated mini-budget last year, as well as a comparison between Donald Trump supporters storming the US Capitol in Washington and Remainers refusing to accept the result of the Brexit referendum.

Posting on X, formerly known as Twitter, Mr Hands insisted the review was being done “with the full support” of Ms Hall.

The 68-year old London Assembly member has promised to scrap plans to expand the capital’s ultra-low emission zone (Ulez) on her first day if elected.

She defeated Mozammel Hossain with 57% of the vote from London Tory members after the exit of Daniel Korski.

Mozammel Hossain KC congratulates Councillor Susan Hall after she named as the Conservative Party candidate for Mayor of London Credit: PA

There was some surprise when London minister Paul Scully failed to make the shortlist to become the Tory candidate.

The review will be carried out by Lord Udny-Lister, who was a close aide to former prime minister Boris Johnson and served in City Hall as his chief of staff when he was mayor of London.

A spokesman said the peer would review “the structures, processes and organisation of the Conservative Party in London”.

“The purpose of this review is to build on the success of the Uxbridge & South Ruislip parliamentary by-election in July, to ensuring that the Conservative Party in London is in the best position possible to take the fight comprehensively to our opponents in next year’s crucial elections across the capital.”

The narrow victory in Uxbridge & South Ruislip came after the local Tory campaign focused heavily on the expansion of the Khan-backed Ulez scheme.

Mr Hands wrote: “The Review is of the Party’s London campaigning machine and is being done with the full support of Susan Hall and will be led by one of our most experienced London Conservatives – Edward Lister.

“We need to beat Khan & gain more London MPs in 2024.”

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