The man who led the successful legal challenge against the proposed closure of Wimbledon Police Station and who came a very close second in the 2019 General Election has been re-selected by the Lib Dems as their candidate to be the next MP for Wimbledon.
Cllr Paul Kohler, a Lib Dem councillor for Wimbledon Town and Dundonald Ward, hit the headlines in 2018 when he took the Mayor of London to court over the decision to close Wimbledon Police Station. Cllr Kohler’s case was successful and the closure was halted, pending reconsideration by the Mayor.
The police station campaign helped Cllr Kohler win election in May 2018 as a councillor for Trinity ward in Wimbledon – an election which saw the Lib Dems surge from fourth place to first, almost tripling their vote share - and he was re-elected as a councillor in 2022 for the newly formed Wimbledon Town and Dundonald Ward.
“It is a privilege to have been selected to contest the next general election as the Lib Dem candidate for Wimbledon”, said Cllr Kohler. “My wife and I have lived in this constituency, where we raised our four daughters, for almost 30 years. I want to give something back to the community that has been so supportive to us.
“People in Wimbledon and the Maldens deserve better than the current Conservative MP, who has repeatedly broken his election promises, first on International Development spending and inflation, rising mortgages and rents hitting hard-pressed families and small businesses across the Wimbledon constituency with a tax hike at a time many are still reeling from the impact of the pandemic."
“There is huge appetite for change amongst the voters of Wimbledon who have had enough of both Tory mismanagement in government and Labour mismanagement on Merton council. I will stand up for our public services where our current Tory MP has failed to do so; and I will strive to give a voice to Wimbledon residents who demand better from their government and their MP. The people of Wimbledon, Old Malden and New Malden deserve better than this. They need an MP who they can trust and who will fight for a fairer deal for our area."
Following the results of the local elections in 2022 - where the Liberal Democrats won 23 councillors across the Wimbledon constituency - and the general election in 2019, it's clear that the Lib Dems are now the second party in Wimbledon, and Cllr Kohler issued a rallying cry to voters who want a fresh start for their area. “The Lib Dems will win Wimbledon next time”, he said. “If you share my vision for a fair, free and tolerant Wimbledon then I urge you join my campaign. Together we can win in Wimbledon.”