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Me on a SOCPA Parliament Protest in April 07

Gareth Winchester is an Independent prospective parliamentary candidate for Bethnal Green and Bow.

In six words (or less):[]

"The Crowd-sourcing Candidate"


  • Age: 28
  • Occupation: Lawyer
  • Born and brought up in Blackburn, Lancashire. Went to university in York, then law college in Chester. Moved down to London in 2006.

Political Beliefs:[]

Describes himself as a Traitorous urban-intellectual.

Political Compass report.



  • Only MPs representing an area more than 100 miles from London will be able to claim a housing allowance which much be of a reasonable sum. All claims to be scrutinised by outside organisations [it is proposed that MPs within 1 hour's travel of Westminster should be barred, which I do not consider to be unreasonable]
  • MPs will be banned from taking any other positions while they are serving
  • The MPs' subsidised bar will be scrapped
  • Party whips would be abolished - MPs should vote on what they think, not what they're told to do
  • Trident nuclear submarines to be scrapped
  • Disestablish the Church of England
  • Scrap the NHS IT system
  • Scrap ASBOs
  • Repeal the Racial & Religious Hatred Act
  • Scrap the ban on "Violent pornography"
  • Enhance the Freedom of Information Act: compulsory disclosure logs, scrap the Ministerial Veto
  • An elected House of Lords
  • A written constitution and a Bill of Rights
  • Remove all samples from the DNA database except for people whose convictions have not yet been spent

How MPs expenses should be claimed.gif

  • Legalise prostitution
  • Abolish Crown Copyright and make all government documents copyright-free
  • Put the National Archives on the Internet
  • MPs must read and know what Bills are about before they are voted on
  • All laws to be put on the Internet in a wiki-style format for public comment before the second reading takes place in a similar manner to that proposed by the US government

Civil liberties[]

  • Bring back double jeopardy
  • Scrap any anti-terrorism legislation passed since 2001
  • Scrap the Civil Contingencies Act 2004
  • Only allow people to be extradicted if there is a prima facie case and the suspect is guaranteed a fair trial
  • Have a public interest defence for whistleblowers
  • Scrap the Serious Organised Crime Act 2005
  • Bring back the right to silence
  • Scrap the use of hearsay in criminal trials
  • Scrap Contactpoint
  • Scrap ID cards and the National Identity Register and any data contained within them to be deleted
  • CCTV would be banned expect for within car parks because it doesn't work;
  • Libel laws to be reformed so that there is a presumption of innocence and the aggrieved party has to show loss and malice in order to win their case;
  • All government departments must use open-source software where available
  • The Parliament protest and police photography laws would be abolished
  • Cannabis would be downgraded back to a Grade C and Ecstasy would be downgraded to a Grade B, as per the AMCD's advice who would also have a complete say on what to do with other currently-illegal drugs. In any event, drugs would no longer be treated as a criminal issue, but a public health problem;

Public transport[]

Greater London[]

  • Shoreditch High Street station would be zone 2, not zone 1 as planned (although this will only affect people travelling from south of Wapping station), with an interchange built with the Central line;
  • The Waterloo & City line should be extended to Paddington station via Victoria, Knightsbridge and Marble Arch with a further station built at Blackfriars;
  • Transport for London should have control of all suburban trains within the Greater London area;
  • The pointless plan for a new version of the Routemaster would be scrapped;
  • Woolwich Arsenal train station would be moved to zone 3/4, thereby moving the DLR station to zone 3;
  • Extend the DLR to London Victoria station from Bank;
  • An express tube line between Hammersmith and Tower Hamlets, possibly via the Victoria DLR extension;
  • Stations on the Northern line where it crosses the train line under Tooting High Street and on Morden Road where it passes under the Croydon tram line


  • Bus deregulation to end and councils to have the same powers as Transport for London regarding the services
  • Extensive electrification of the to-be-nationalised railways would take place;
  • The Manchester Metrolink would be extended via the East Lancashire Railway to Rawtenstall (and possibly Burnley) and it would also be extended to Wigan and Leigh;
  • A train line would be built from Manchester to Burnley to help travel from east Lancashire and one would be built from Uckfield to Lewes as a diversion to for London-Brighton trains;
  • An "M25 train line" would be built encircling Greater London, reducing the need to travel into central London for long-distance train journeys.


  • NHS prescription charges to be abolished. They are unfair, arbitrary in the conditions and medications they cover and are only a minimal source of income for the NHS[1]
  • Generic versions of medications must be prescribed where one exists
  • No NHS funding of alternative medicine - treatments must have a valid scientific basis
  • Remove VAT on feminine hygiene products


  • Give everybody a tax cut: reduce VAT to between 8 and 10% and increase income tax on higher earners to compensate