Link to BBC Homepage

Front Page

UK

World

Business

Sci/Tech

Sport

Despatches

World News in Audio


On Air

Cantonese

Talking Point

Feedback

Low Graphics

Help

Site Map


Friday, May 8, 1998 Published at 07:59 GMT 08:59 UK



Special Report

London wants a mayor
image: [ ...and by a massive majority ]
...and by a massive majority

YES - 72%

NO - 28%

London has said 'Yes' to a new elected mayor and a Greater London Authority.

At around 3.30am the 26th result was returned in favour of the government's proposals - marking the finishing post in the London Referendum. All 33 boroughs have said 'Yes'.

Approximately 72% of those who voted, around one million Londoners, put their cross in the 'Yes' box on the ballot paper. Only 28% voted against the assembly and the mayor.


[ image: Turnout was even lower at the referendum party]
Turnout was even lower at the referendum party
However, the turnout was disappointingly low - averaging only 34% of eligible voters.

The Prime Minister, Tony Blair, said: "The referendum result was good in London.

"Obviously we would have liked a higher turn-out, but I think the truth of the matter is that most people supported having a mayor for London.

"I think there will be a lot of enthusiasm about London having a strong, independent, political voice that can speak up for Londoners."

Celebrations have been far from ecstatic - in fact one BBC reporter said that he could only see six people at the 'party' hall in Church House - and two of them were policemen.

Contenders

Two main contenders for the position gave their immediate reactions to the result.

Lord Archer, novelist and former deputy chairman of the Conservative Party said: "If it's going to be like that then I think that's very good." He also said it would be an "excellent" result.


Ken Livingstone says "Secretly Tony Blair must be backing me!" (2'16")
Ken Livingstone, Labour MP for Brent and former leader of the Greater London Council (GLC), told BBC Radio 5Live that although he isn't being officially supported as a candidate by the Labour party, he thinks Tony Blair must be secretly backing him.

Referring to the fact that he has not been backed by the government in his bid to be mayor, he also said: "I think Tony Blair will shortly make it clear that London party members will be allowed to decide who they want."


[ image: Possible candidate Trevor Phillips]
Possible candidate Trevor Phillips
Another possible candidate for mayor, broadcaster Trevor Phillips, said he hoped a new assembly would not bring back old politics and old politicians.

He said: "I will make sure the line-up won't be just white, middle-aged men. I want it to be more 21st century than that. I don't think it's a bad thing there's been a low turnout. London has decided that they want to get on with things and don't need to make any more decisions."
 





Back to top | BBC News Home | BBC Homepage

©

Link to BBC Homepage

  Relevant Stories

08 May 98 | Events
Low turnout boosts Labour plans to change system

08 May 98 | Events
Mixed night for main parties in local elections

 
  In this section

London wants a mayor

Is anybody out there?

Overwhelming vote for mayor

'X' marks the spot

A mayor for the Millennium

Guide to the government's London blueprint

Conservative proposals for London

Liberal Democrat proposals for London

Londoners snub politicians for mayor

Who's in the running for Mayor?

Should Londoners take a bite out of the Big Apple?

Clever Dick

'Yes' or 'No'?

 
Special Report Contents
 -  Education League Tables
 -  Sport
 -  Mars Surveyor probe
 -  Single currency
 -  El Nino
 -  Space
 -  Unabomber
 -  Dev
 -  Whitbread yacht race
 -  Louise Woodward case
 -  House of Lords
 -  ISS
 -  video




1998 Contents

 - 

Care in the community

 - 

Sri Lanka

 - 

Drugs in sport

 - 

Millennium Dome

 - 

WEF Davos

 - 

Health

 - 

Diana

 - 

04/98

 - 

Karla Faye Tucker

 - 

EU Enlargement

 - 

Five Nations

 - 

Asian economic crises

 - 

London Referendum

 - 

Water Week

 - 

Romanov

 - 

Pope in Cuba

 - 

South Korea

 - 

Chinese New Year

 - 

Harley Davidson

 - 

Woodward

 - 

Car Crash

 - 

Northern Ireland

 - 

Elgar

 - 

Super Bowl XXXII

 - 

Kosovo

 - 

Gulf War Syndrome

 - 

Hooligans

 - 

Bloody Sunday

 - 

Food Agency

 - 

Encryption

 - 

Bon Appetit

 - 

Eurasia 98

 - 

US abortion rights

 - 

liberal democrats

 - 

Valentine

 - 

Welfare Reform

 - 

Australian Republic

 - 

PNG

 - 

1970s

 - 

India Elections

 - 

Viagra