WHATEVER happens at the forthcoming general and council elections, history will be made when the people of Hammersmith and Fulham go and vote.
For a start, if the general election is called for May 6, this could be the first time - since the London boroughs were created in 1965 - that borough elections will be held the same day as a general election. Nobody knows what the effect of this might be. One thing for sure, though, is that it will be a challenging night for those council staff in Hammersmith Town Hall counting all of the votes, across two different elections.
Second, the Hammersmith and Fulham parliamentary constituency, which I currently represent in the House of Commons, will be abolished. There will be two new seats - one called Fulham and Chelsea, and the other called Hammersmith. The Conservatives are currently the favourites to win in Hammersmith. According to bookmakers Ladbrokes, the Conservatives are 4-6 on, and Labour 11-10 against. The Lib Dems are at 100-1.
Now, back to our history theme, I am the first Conservative to be elected to represent Hammersmith in Parliament since 1964. If Shaun Bailey is successful at the coming election, he will be the first Conservative to be elected to represent Hammersmith and Shepherd's Bush since 1910. So not only will history be made, there could even be a centenary!
By the way, for those readers who might think that Hammersmith has always been more red, and Fulham more blue, this hasn't always been the case. Going back a hundred years to the 1910 election, Hammersmith had been held by the Conservatives for some time, whereas it was the Liberals who had won both Fulham and Chelsea at the previous election in 1906. Unfortunately for them, 1906 was the last time the Liberals won an election of any description in Hammersmith and Fulham.
My main purpose in writing this is not to make a party political broadcast, but to urge all Chronicle readers to use this opportunity to make their voice heard, and to vote. I look forward to seeing you there.