Labour starts the chicken run

Remember the “chicken run” – the way that, before Labour’s 1997 election victory, Tory MPs started abandoning their marginal seats and getting themselves safer ones? At the time, Labour seized on it gleefully as an admission of impending defeat. Well, what goes around comes around. In the last few days, something very similar has started happening among the London representatives of the People’s Party.

On my home turf of Greenwich, one of the capital’s most solidly Labour boroughs, the council leader and a key member of his cabinet are both on the move to safer ground – although their wards aren’t even particularly marginal. What does that tell us about Labour’s expectations and fears in next year’s borough elections, almost certainly to be held on the same day as the Westminster one? Find out at my weekly column on the Greenwich hyperlocal site,, here.

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