Sarah Jones has gained Croydon Central for Labour

By - Friday 9th June, 2017

Croydon Central result changes Croydon’s political map for first time since 2005

The audience and media wait for Councillor Toni Letts, the Mayor of Croydon, to declare the result of the the Croydon Central vote.
Photo by Zach Baker for the Croydon Citizen.

After a long night of counting and deliberation, the results came in for Croydon’s three constituencies. Croydon North and Croydon South have been traditionally safe seats for the Labour and Conservative parties respectively. This year’s results kept those seats in the red and blue columns. However Croydon Central swung left and was gained by the Labour party’s Sarah Jones. In 2015, Croydon Central was London’s most marginal seat, which made Jones’ 5,653 vote victory over Gavin Barwell all the more surprising.

Volunteers carry ballet boxes inside Trinity school as they arrive they from different polling stations.
Photo by Zach Baker for the Croydon Citizen.

This year 251,041 Croydon residents registered to vote, which was an increase over the 2015 election turnout. Voters had access to 147 different polling stations across the borough. After the polls closed at 22:00, the ballet boxes from each station were transported to Trinity School in Croydon Central. Over the next several hours, a staff of 250 people worked together to make the counting process go as smoothly as possible. Around 4:20 the Labour party’s Sarah Jones was declared the winner of Croydon Central. Around 5:00 the Labour party’s Steve Reed was declared the winner of Croydon North. Around 5:30 the Conservative party’s Chris Philp was announced the winner of Croydon South.

Three staff members manually counts votes for the Croydon South constituency.
Photo by Zach Baker for the Croydon Citizen.

From a national perspective the election did not go as planned for the Tories. A large section of the youth population came out to the polls to make their voices heard and the Labour party benefited from them greatly. After calling an early election to gain more seats, the Conservatives will walk away with fewer seats and a smaller majority than before.

Sarah Jones smiles with joy while her supporters celebrate behind her.
Photo by Zach Baker for the Croydon Citizen.

Sarah Jones and her supporters were ecstatic after the declaration. Barwell congratulated Jones on her victory and said he was looking forward to having more time to spend with his family. “It’s the best town in London. It’s an amazing place with amazing people. I promise to be your representative in Croydon and I promise to stand up for Croydon,” said Jones after her victory.

Zach Baker

Zach Baker

Zach Baker is the Croydon Citizen's first dedicated reporter and photographer. Hailing from the US, he is a student studying journalism in London. He has a passion for clean design and incorporating visuals with narratives. As a journalist, he aims to illuminate the stories of Croydon through strong visuals and writing. In his free time he often works with multimedia such as audio and video to create impactful projects. Views personal, not representative of editorial policy.

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  • Jonny Rose


    Welcome to The Croydon Citizen and thank you for your excellent live coverage throughout this very exciting night! I’m looking forward to seeing more of your writing in the future :)

    Jonny Rose
    Founder, Croydon Tech City (

  • Allen Williams

    I think we should recall David Winnick, who represented Croydon South (roughly equivalent to the present Croydon Central) from 1966 to 1970. He visited our school (Whitgift) to talk to us politics students during that time, and I was fascinated by how easily he out-argued all the hostile questions he received from the audience of already hard-line Tories that my alma mater had bred (as you might expect, if you know the school). He did so with quiet charm and ease. It had a great influence on me. I think Croydon has reason to express gratitude to him, as he gave Croydon a taste of democratic socialism.

    He lost the 1974 election in Croydon, and moved on to represent Walsall North for 38 years until the current election, where he has lost to the Tory candidate at the grand old age of 83.

    I think it would be most appropriate if the present Croydon Central Labour party could see its way to contacting him to express its thanks and if the Council could do so to give him its best wishes for his retirement.