Labour’s Tulip Siddiq tops the list of general election big spenders

Tulip Siddiq

Tulip Siddiq - Credit: Archant

More than £190,000 was spent by candidates standing in Camden constituencies at this year’s general election, with some shelling out more than £40,000 on their campaigns and one hopeful parting with just £50.

Simon Marcus.

Simon Marcus. - Credit: Archant

Every candidate standing in May’s general election submitted the receipts from their campaigns to the Electoral Commission this month and last week their accounts for the election fight became available to view at Camden Town Hall.

Maajid Nawaz. Picture: Nigel Sutton.

Maajid Nawaz. Picture: Nigel Sutton. - Credit: Nigel Sutton

The receipts show that across both Hampstead and Kilburn and Holborn and St Pancras, Labour’s Tulip Siddiq was the biggest spender. Ms Siddiq spent £42,752.16 on her campaign, which was ultimately successful in delivering her to parliament.

She was followed closely by her defeated Conservative opponent Simon Marcus who spent £41,115.23.

The figures stand in stark contrast to comments made by Ms Siddiq last year when she told the Ham&High that she “always knew” the Tories would “outspend us” before declaring: “This seat is not for sale.”

In contrast, Ukip veteran Magnus Nielsen chose to keep his hand firmly out of his pocket, spending a total of just £50 on a few election leaflets.

Mr Nielsen was vastly outspent by a number of more obscure candidates in both Camden constituencies, such as Animal Welfare candidate Vanessa Hudson and U Party contender Robin Ellison, who both spent in excess of £1,000.

Another member of the ‘£40k club’ was Green Party leader Natalie Bennett who came third in Holborn and St Pancras despite having spent £40,579.11, a small fortune some party members may feel should not have been channelled into such a safe Labour seat.

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Her Labour rival Sir Keir Starmer, who won the seat with a 17,000-majority, spent half as much. He was delivered to parliament at a cost of £20,440.51.

The fifth highest spender in Camden was Liberal Democrat Maajid Nawaz who threw £16,926.55 at his ultimately futile campaign in Hampstead and Kilburn.

Mr Nawaz, a slick operator who impressed with his confident oratory on the hustings circuit, delivered on his claims to be a prolific fundraiser.

The former Islamist radical, now a counter-extremism expert, pulled in more than £5,000 of individual donations from supporters in the weeks leading up to election day.

Notably, this included £200 from Lady Leslie Bonham-Carter, the aunt of Hollywood actress Helena Bonham Carter, who is the widow of Mark Bonham Carter, grandson of late Liberal prime minister Herbert Asquith.

Mr Nawaz also received £2,000 from Hampstead resident Celia Atkin, once one of Britain’s wealthiest women, who ran a lucrative baby care products business with her husband Edward, a serial Tory donor.

Ms Siddiq’s most valuable donor was retired West Hampstead resident Philip Healey, a former publishing company owner, who gave her £10,000 for her campaign in December, while Mr Marcus enjoyed a £6,500 donation from Hampstead-based hedge fund manager Anthony Todd just weeks before the May 5 election.