Victoria Ward councillors Geoffrey Taylor and Will Brett will be stepping down from their positions in May 2018.
The only current Victoria ward councillor running for re-election in 2018 will be Katie Hanson, who has been serving since 2006.
Brett, who has been serving one year, has “moved house and had a baby so since he came on the council his life’s changed” according to Hanson and Taylor will not run for reelection due to undisclosed health issues.
Taylor’s announcement not to run in next year’s election in particular comes as a hard blow to the Hackney community, including Hackney mayor Philip Glanville, who cited Taylor as being an important mentor to him at the 25 Oct council meeting.
Serving as a Victoria ward councillor since 2002, Taylor also served as speaker of hackney council in 2004-05 and has been a cabinet member since 2014 with responsibility for finance.
Caroline Bousfield Gregory, a local resident and business owner in Victoria for more than 40 years, said “I’m sorry that Geoff Taylor is going because he’s been absolutely stalwart. He’s been brilliant.
“I’ve seen him [at] meetings dealing with awkward questions and people… upset about things. He’s so calm and considerate and always has some kind of positive way forward.”
Victoria, much like the whole of Hackney, is Labour party dominant. All three current Victoria ward councillors are Labour party members. According to Hanson, Clare Joseph, an actor, and Alex Kuye, whose information is not yet public, are expected to run as Labour party candidates in 2018, which will be made official “[when] the election is called…in the Spring.”
Councillors Taylor and Brett were contacted for this article but did not reply for comment.