Long-standing Liberal Democrat councillor for Surrey Docks, Lisa Rajan, has announced today that she is stepping down from the Council after fourteen years serving the local community.
Following her husband’s job moving to Manchester last year, Lisa has found it more and more difficult to balance the time and commitment that she feels the community deserves while balancing a full-time job and the needs of her young family. She has taken the difficult decision to stand down to ensure that residents can elect someone new to fight their corner.
Lisa first became involved in community campaigning when she felt the Labour-run council was ruining Canada Water by filling it with concrete and flats. She decided to join the community’s battle to protect the open spaces and special character of the area.
After fourteen years, the community is facing exactly the same issues as the Council develops its Canada Water Masterplan. Many Surrey Docks residents are unhappy with the Labour-run council’s recent decisions on the location of the new leisure centre at Canada Water and the prospect of 50-storey buildings mirroring Canary Wharf’s skyscrapers as part of the regeneration around Canada Water.
Other issues the local Liberal Democrat councillors are campaigning on include:
• a new shuttle bus around the Rotherhithe peninsula to relieve pressure on the existing bus routes between Surrey Quays, Canada Water and Rotherhithe stations.
• a new walking and cycling bridge between Rotherhithe and Canary Wharf.
• better broadband services for local residents in SE16.
Two years ago Lisa ran the London Marathon to raise funds for the Rotherhithe Time & Talents community centre. She was easy to spot as she passed through the peninsula as she was dressed as Wonder Woman!
Commenting on her decision to stand down as a councillor, Lisa Rajan said:
“It is with huge sadness that I am standing down as one of the Liberal Democrat councillors for Surrey Docks. For fourteen years I have had the greatest privilege of representing an incredible community and helping win the fights for the new Canada Water Library and the C10 bus route.
“Being a councillor needs serious commitment though and I'm very sorry that changes in my personal life mean that I can no longer serve residents the way Liberal Democrat councillors believe we should always do.
“Fourteen years after first being elected, there are still huge issues in Surrey Docks. Most importantly, we need to make the council's regeneration process happen 'with' residents and not 'to' them. We also need proper infrastructure in place - GPs, schools and transport - before further huge development takes place at Canada Water.
“I really want to thank residents for their support over the years and hope they will continue to back the Liberal Democrats as the best choice to fight residents’ corner in Surrey Docks.”