Constituency Update

Address: Croydon Central

Constituency Update: May 2023

From Sarah Jones
An update on constituency boundary changes in Croydon

As many of you will know, the Boundary Commission has produced revised plans for new parliamentary constituencies.  The final report will be out soon but it is likely that there will now be 4 constituencies covering Croydon. Croydon Central will cease to exist, and will be split between the new Croydon East, West, and South seats.

I will be standing for the Labour Party in the constituency of Croydon West, which covers the town centre. I’ll be keeping some of my current constituents but will sadly be saying goodbye to others. This was not an easy decision – but the status quo was not an option. I will remain the MP for Croydon Central up until the next general election and will continue to represent you all to the very best of my abilities. It goes without saying that, if I’m lucky enough to be elected in Croydon West, I will continue to be an outward facing and campaigning champion for the whole borough: the place where I was born, brought up, and live.

Government focus on internal fights while residents struggle with mortgage rises

This morning the Privileges Committee found that the former Prime Minister Boris Johnson deliberately misled Parliament and recommended that – were he still an MP – a 90 day suspension would’ve been appropriate.

It’s the latest episode in a drama which has seen Rishi Sunak agree Johnson’s Honours List and the Conservative Party descend into internal battles.  It is a very difficult time for the country as homeowners are hit with a mortgage penalty of thousands a year, and with interest rates stand at 3 times what they were two years ago. The average household is paying an extra £150 every single week.  I would like a government focused on those issues and I am trying to keep focused on the issues that matter to people in Croydon.

Productive meeting with Westfield chief

I was pleased to host the UK Chief of Westfield in Parliament last week. As many of you will know, Unibail-Rodamco-Westfield recently completed on a deal to buy Hammerson’s share of Croydon Partnership – making them the sole company with the rights to develop the centre of Croydon. I am committed to working with Westfield and other stakeholders to make sure that the centre sees the regeneration it needs. I am hoping we will see a master plan agreed before the end of the year, and begin to see movement on site in 2024.

Court case nearly concluded on Sandilands tram crash

The driver at the time of the Sandilands tram crash has started his trial at the Old Bailey. He has been charged with an alleged health and safety failing in relation to the fatal and tragic Sandilands tram crash on the 9th November 2016.

I have been in touch with the Minister in charge of Roads and Local Transport to ask about a local transport legislation review, and other plans that the Department for Transport has to further regulate tramways and tram travel. I will also be pushing ahead with my own proposals to change legislation.

I am glad to see this case finally come to court after so long. Nonetheless, more than 6 years on, the Sandilands crash continues to cast a long shadow over Croydon and its communities. We were all deeply affected by this tragedy. I can only imagine how difficult this process will be for the families and friends of those affected.

I have also been concerned at recent reports of multiple trams needing emergency repairs and maintenance. I’ve written to Tram Operations asking for an urgent update and reassurance that safety continues to be a top priority. You can read my letter here:

A ‘Good’ day out at South Norwood Primary

A complete delight to visit South Norwood Primary School, where my grandfather was a proud headmaster. They have recently received an improved Ofsted rating of ‘Good’, and they kindly let me cut the red ribbon to celebrate this well-deserved achievement.

Plans underway to develop the Arena site

The Arena site is incredibly important for Croydon – the Harriers and Croydon Football Club and Croydon Women’s Football all meet there.  We have had seen many Olympians trained in the the Harriers – but the track is now so dilapidated that we can’t have competitions there anymore.  I brought together the founder of Oasis (who run Oasis Arena school next door), the head of the Palace for Life Foundation, the Harriers and the Football club to talk about the future.  We are working on a plan to put to the Council and potential donors that could lead to the renewal of this incredibly important Croydon landmark.  We must make sure our kids can train there across the range of sports – and that will take ambition and funding.

Mayor of London increases support for scrappage scheme

I am pleased that the Mayor of London has committed to expanding financial aid for Londoners as part of the ULEZ scrappage scheme. Under the new plans, families and businesses will receive more support. Thousands more individuals will be able to benefit.

Air pollution is a real problem in London and affects all parts of our great city. People in the poorest areas also suffer from the worst pollution. However, I know that my constituents are struggling with the cost-of-living crisis. I wrote to the Mayor asking him to extend the scrappage scheme to those with families and small businesses, and I am really pleased that he has listened to these calls.

Please see my letter here:

Children’s mental health in Croydon meetings

I have been facilitating meetings between South London and Maudsley Mental Health Trust, the Chief Exec of Croydon Health Services NHS Trust and the Director of Education, along with heads and SENCO leads across Croydon to talk about ways to tackle the real problem of mental health amongst our children.  The meetings have been incredibly positive with actions already seeing an impact.  This is so important to so many people in Croydon Central and we have to get it right for our kids.  I’m hoping to see real change.

Real concern at cuts to Neighbourhood Safety Officers

The Mayor of Croydon has announced plans to cut every neighbourhood safety officer in the borough. They do vital work to keep Croydon clean and safe for residents and visitors alike. Together with Steve Reed, MP for Croydon North, I have written a letter to Mayor Perry asking him to think again.
Croydon Residents Association meetings

It’s been a busy period for residents association Annual General Meetings. I have attended Park Hill, Addington, and Spring Park Associations, and the Park Hill & Whitgift Safer Neighbourhood Team Annual General Meeting.  Its really useful to talk to people about their local concerns – certainly helps me do my job better.

145 Scots Guards detachment in New Addington

I spent an evening in New Addington with the 145 Scots Guards detachment. I have great respect for the cadets and it was a pleasure to attend and see what they were doing. I had the opportunity to say a few words of encouragement, and wished the cadets well for the completion of their syllabus.

The Red Hatters in Parliament

Very good to welcome the Croydon and Bromley Red Hatters to Parliament – a really lovely group of women.


The best of Croydon’s youth organisations at Royal Russell

‘The jewel in the crown’ is how Croydon’s youth organisations in uniform were described by You London at the fabulous You Croydon event hosted by the CCF at Royal Russell. It was amazing to see great team working, and as always it was good to see the climbing wall in action.

Casework Update

Over the past month, many of these cases are constituents asking for help with housing issues which are usually about overcrowding or maintenance. The second largest number of cases are related to the Council for example, people being concerned about the uncared-for state of Croydon’s town centre and anti-social behaviour. I also continue to be approached for help regarding the cost-of-living crisis as many people are still struggling to make ends meet. Please do tell people with problems that I might be able to help with to get in touch.