What Do The Voters In London's Tightest Marginal Think?

Rachel Holdsworth
By Rachel Holdsworth Last edited 39 months ago
What Do The Voters In London's Tightest Marginal Think?
Brenden, Frognal and Fitzjohns, 5 May 
"Undecided. If I was called on to do it today I might vote for the Conservatives. Generally by values I’d go for Labour values, but I think the Conservatives will look after the economy. I treated the last general election like a single issue referendum. I was a student last time, and I learnt politicians can lie. Since I matured it doesn’t mean I wouldn’t vote Lib Dem again. It taught me an important lesson and I realised the complexities of politics, you feel like you have to be expert in everything like the economy, NHS, education, foreign affairs. It's such a multi-faceted thing and I think it’s hard for your values to succinctly align with something."
Brenden, Frognal and Fitzjohns, 5 May
"Undecided. If I was called on to do it today I might vote for the Conservatives. Generally by values I’d go for Labour values, but I think the Conservatives will look after the economy. I treated the last general election like a single issue referendum. I was a student last time, and I learnt politicians can lie. Since I matured it doesn’t mean I wouldn’t vote Lib Dem again. It taught me an important lesson and I realised the complexities of politics, you feel like you have to be expert in everything like the economy, NHS, education, foreign affairs. It's such a multi-faceted thing and I think it’s hard for your values to succinctly align with something."
Christina, Belsize. 28 April 
“It’s very difficult to decide because I haven’t read the manifestos. Naturally I’m more right wing but I don’t like the Conservatives' policies this election. Their priorities are wrong because they’re focusing on inheritance and allowing people to pass more onto their children, which is going to cost and it’s not really a priority at the moment when we’re in such economic straights. I like the Lib Dems' balanced approach, not borrowing or spending too much, it looks like they’ve got their heads screwed on.”
Christina, Belsize. 28 April
“It’s very difficult to decide because I haven’t read the manifestos. Naturally I’m more right wing but I don’t like the Conservatives' policies this election. Their priorities are wrong because they’re focusing on inheritance and allowing people to pass more onto their children, which is going to cost and it’s not really a priority at the moment when we’re in such economic straights. I like the Lib Dems' balanced approach, not borrowing or spending too much, it looks like they’ve got their heads screwed on.”
Claire, Frognal and Fitzjohns, 16 April 
“I am slightly undecided. I’m a natural Lib Dem but will probably vote Labour in order to make a more decisive impact on the next government. I feel that the Conservatives don’t have in mind people who find life more difficult than the rest and who are poor and challenged in various ways. I ran a homeless shelter here for a while and it was clear that people were falling through the net in these times, and I feel a more socialist or liberal view would serve them better.”
Claire, Frognal and Fitzjohns, 16 April
“I am slightly undecided. I’m a natural Lib Dem but will probably vote Labour in order to make a more decisive impact on the next government. I feel that the Conservatives don’t have in mind people who find life more difficult than the rest and who are poor and challenged in various ways. I ran a homeless shelter here for a while and it was clear that people were falling through the net in these times, and I feel a more socialist or liberal view would serve them better.”
Elo, Swiss Cottage, 5 May 
“I’m actually undecided. I know it’s really late days but I’m pretty undecided at the moment, I’ve got to watch Question Time a few more times. The political battle has been really engaging, a lot of people have been way more interested now than they were. I wasn’t that interested a few years ago, but now I’m really interested and been watching everything and listening to a lot of stuff. What’s interesting is it’s properly going to be a coalition which seems like the new way of democracy in the UK. So what I’m more thinking about is what their policies are and what I’m going to get out of it, so not really the parties themselves - I can’t differentiate that much between them - but thinking about what does it mean and what kind of combination government will it be at the end, based on my vote.”
Elo, Swiss Cottage, 5 May
“I’m actually undecided. I know it’s really late days but I’m pretty undecided at the moment, I’ve got to watch Question Time a few more times. The political battle has been really engaging, a lot of people have been way more interested now than they were. I wasn’t that interested a few years ago, but now I’m really interested and been watching everything and listening to a lot of stuff. What’s interesting is it’s properly going to be a coalition which seems like the new way of democracy in the UK. So what I’m more thinking about is what their policies are and what I’m going to get out of it, so not really the parties themselves - I can’t differentiate that much between them - but thinking about what does it mean and what kind of combination government will it be at the end, based on my vote.”
Kao, Kilburn, 2 May 
“If I vote I'll probably vote Green Party as they're the least dickish out of all of them. They're all doing stuff for rich people, everything's for rich people, even Labour. Where is the housing for people that can barely afford it? All these empty houses, bare empty houses and shit for people. All because multi-millionaires want to buy places and say "Oh I've now got a London home", and they aren't doing anything about that, they're just making everything harder for the people that have to work and actually build the economy. Basically, they're saying the rich make the economy, nah, it's the people you pay a pittance that make you your profit and you ruin their lives. It's benefits as well. A decent benefit, some people need it to look after themselves but they cut it... What else am I pissed off about? I'm pissed off about a lot of stuff actually.”
Kao, Kilburn, 2 May
“If I vote I'll probably vote Green Party as they're the least dickish out of all of them. They're all doing stuff for rich people, everything's for rich people, even Labour. Where is the housing for people that can barely afford it? All these empty houses, bare empty houses and shit for people. All because multi-millionaires want to buy places and say "Oh I've now got a London home", and they aren't doing anything about that, they're just making everything harder for the people that have to work and actually build the economy. Basically, they're saying the rich make the economy, nah, it's the people you pay a pittance that make you your profit and you ruin their lives. It's benefits as well. A decent benefit, some people need it to look after themselves but they cut it... What else am I pissed off about? I'm pissed off about a lot of stuff actually.”
Louis, Fortune Green, 7 April 
“I am thinking about going UKIP, purely because the old boys (Cameron et al) need to know that they have to keep on top of things. They can't get complacent and expect people to just take whatever they're shoveling. I'm not your typical UKIP voter but I want to show there's dissent among the population and something needs to be done. It's not because I support the UKIP agenda, it's just I am sick of the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer. If UKIP get in it will scare the non-voters and the people who don't really care. They'll be saying "Oh God, I need to get my shoes on and vote for what's right".”
Louis, Fortune Green, 7 April
“I am thinking about going UKIP, purely because the old boys (Cameron et al) need to know that they have to keep on top of things. They can't get complacent and expect people to just take whatever they're shoveling. I'm not your typical UKIP voter but I want to show there's dissent among the population and something needs to be done. It's not because I support the UKIP agenda, it's just I am sick of the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer. If UKIP get in it will scare the non-voters and the people who don't really care. They'll be saying "Oh God, I need to get my shoes on and vote for what's right".”

Photographers Orlando Gili and Joseph Fox have spent the duration of the 'short' election campaign capturing the voters of Hampstead and Kilburn — in 2010, the country's tightest seat, won by Labour with only 42 votes. The pair wanted to see what was on the mind of residents and how that would make them vote on Thursday. You can see the results on the website Marginal Streets, or pop along to the junction of Kilburn High Road and Brondesbury Road on 7 May to see the images exhibited outdoors in the heart of the constituency (thanks to the largesse of Papercolour).

Orlando and Joseph say:

"With the constituency boundaries recently redrawn, Hampstead and Kilburn contains an even greater range of demographics in the 2015 general election. The nine electoral wards encapsulate every possible income, ethnicity and age — from the palatial villas of Hampstead Heath via the heaving hustle and bustle on Kilburn High Road and suburban style central London retreats of Swiss Cottage and Fortune Green.

"The more we photographed the more we became aware of the level of uncertainty; people were still weighing up the options until the very end, while those who were traditionally Labour, Conservative or Liberal Democrat supporters were challenging their voting habits and shifting to new parties. The voters displayed give an indication of the complexity and uncertainty in this constituency, perhaps going some way to representing what is happening in other key marginal seats across the country."

Read more of Londonist's election coverage.

Last Updated 06 May 2015