Mayoral candidate Zac Goldsmith talks his plans for Barking and Dagenham

PUBLISHED: 07:00 19 February 2016 | UPDATED: 12:07 19 February 2016

Zac Goldsmith at the Post's office in Barking

Zac Goldsmith at the Post's office in Barking


Conservative London Mayor candidate Zac Goldsmith has vowed to ensure that development in the borough doesn’t primarily focus on Barking.

Speaking during a sit-down interview with the Post in our Barking office, the MP for Richmond Park said the community would “come first”.

“I’m a localist at heart, and really my default position will be to work with local representatives,” he said. “I look forward to working with borough leaders across the board to make sure Dagenham improves along with Barking.”

The 41-year-old son of billionaire financier Sir James Goldsmith – who is regarded as the main rival to Labour’s Sadiq Khan in May’s election – also promised to look at improving issues on the A13.

“I am the only candidate who as Mayor of London can work with the Government and the Highways Agency to upgrade the A13 road for pedestrians, cyclists and motorists,” he said. “I will seriously consider tunnel proposals put forward in order to free up land for affordable housing.”

Mr Goldsmith said he was pleased that Overground line is set to be extended to Barking Riverside, something which he suggested would boost employment by improving links with areas such as Central London, Isle of Dogs and Stratford.

“As Mayor, I will work with Government to deliver further transport infrastructure projects to boost employment and get a better deal for London business,” he said.

Mr Goldsmith described housing as his “top priority” and said he would work hard to ensure that people are not priced out of their own city.

He promised any homes built on mayoral land will only be sold to Londoners – people who have lived or worked in the capital for three years and do not own a home.

He assured voters there would be affordable options “due to increasing supply, with shared ownership, help-to-buy and starter homes”.

Mr Goldsmith believes the choice for Londoners on May 5 is a simple one: “Apart from a few differences, we’re both promising fairly similar things, the question is who can deliver.

“If you look at my record, I’ve made promises and kept them.”

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