The General Election result was devastating for Labour. The party lost the support of voters who have only ever voted Labour before. I first stood for election here in the European elections in 2009 and I have learnt much from promoting Labour in my home town over the past decade.

There have been times when being the candidate has been a lonely experience in Watford. I can remember canvassing on my own with just one or two Labour councillors in years past, when I was often told by voters that they couldn’t see much difference between the parties - ‘you’re all the same’ was a common refrain on the doorstep.

Labour's distinctive policy platform in 2017 and 2019, and the hundreds of young members who travelled to Watford to support Labour, are a testament to Jeremy Corbyn's impact on our party, but we will never win elections with idealism and activism alone.

I have a very simple test, 'the Watford test’, that any potential Labour Prime Minister must pass before I can vote for them in a leadership election.

I think about a particular voter who I met on their own doorstep; one who isn’t that political, but who didn’t really like the idea of a Tory government, and I ask myself, “who would I want standing next to me as a potential Labour Prime Minister? Who could gain this voter’s trust?”

I am voting for Lisa Nandy in this leadership election as I want voters in Watford to trust Labour again. Lisa Nandy represents the best of Labour and she understands that voters value security in their own lives and their communities. In 2019 I came across former Labour voters in Watford who were genuinely scared of the prospect of a Labour government and we can’t afford to let that happen again.

  • Chris Ostrowski was Labour candidate in the 2017 and 2019 general elections