Tom Conti: ‘If I was the Mayor of London I’d abolish myself’

14:15 23 April 2012

Tom Conti has some regrets about not standing for London Mayor

Tom Conti has some regrets about not standing for London Mayor

PA Archive/Press Association Images

As the battle for London Mayor enters its final throes, Hampstead actor Tom Conti has revealed he is harbouring some regrets about not standing for office.

The Shirley Valentine actor toyed with the idea of swapping the film set for City Hall in 2008.

Despite offering his services to the Conservatives, he was pipped to the post by that other great performer – Boris Johnson, who was selected as the party’s candidate.

The Scottish-born actor said: “I was tempted to run for London Mayor this time round. I sort of regretted not running in 2008.

“I decided not to because my family asked me please don’t do this, it will ruin all of our lives. They were probably right.

“I think the meetings that one would have to have with a lot of trying and angry people, seems a bit dreary.”

Despite contemplating a foray into politics, Mr Conti revealed that if he ever was elected London Mayor his first move would be to abolish the position.

“One of the things I would have done if I had been elected was start to dismantle the office because I am not sure we need a Mayor of London,” he said.

“I don’t see that there has been any great benefit. Public transport has improved but that may have happened anyway. It is expensive and quite frankly I’m not sure it is worth it.”

Wise words perhaps, but there are few politicians who have determined their own demise.

One can only guess what City Hall veteran Ken Livingstone thinks of all this.

The Labour hopeful was criticised by Conti, who said his election would be a “tragedy”.

He had warmer words for independent candidate Siobhan Benita, although he fell short of an outright endorsement.

“I am supporting her right to stand,” he said.

“I don’t know enough about her to know if I would vote for her, but I think it is a good thing she is running because she is independent and I think people are sick of party politics.”

We will discover whether London agrees on May 3.

Sign up for our news alerts today!

Our editors' picks for the day's top news delivered to your inbox or phone.

Sign up for email alerts Sign up for mobile alerts
1
2 3 4 5 6
7

Latest London politics news

Wednesday, August 26, 2015
The eponymous craft beer is not always brewed in the capital (Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

If there’s two things London foodies are obsessed with, it’s craft beer and local products, so it’s a surprise to learn that a drink that is named after London and boasts of being “the quintessential English lager” is sometimes brewed in Europe.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015
How should the next generation of Boris bikes look? (Photo by Steve Bardens/ Getty Images for Santander)

Santander Boris bikes as we know them could be a thing of the past after TfL issued a tender for their redesign.

Wednesday, August 19, 2015
New Fathers 4 Justice campaigners altered this local council anti- domestic violence poster in Greenwich Station (Picture: New Fathers 4 Justice)

An anti-domestic violence poster has angered fathers campaign groups and today two activists were ‘removed’ by police from a south-east London train station for defacing the council missive.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015
Paddy Power reckon it's a dead cert for Labour leadership candidate Jeremy Corbyn (Lauren Hurley/PA Wire)

Jeremy Corbyn’s victory in the Labour leadership race is a “done deal” according to one bookmaker which has already started paying out on bets.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015
Computer class

New figures show, in the face of growing youth unemployment, vacancies for digital jobs is set to widen in the next year.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015
Lord Sewel resigns from the House of Lords (Picture: PA Images)

Lord Sewel has quit the House of Lords after video footage emerged of him allegedly taking cocaine with two prostitutes in his London flat, even snorting a line off one woman’s breasts.

What is this?

Near You Now

Don't Miss...

Competitions

Shop till you drop!

Home to top name brands at great prices, TK Maxx is more like a treasure hunt than a shop. Perfect for grabbing a bargain or some hidden gems, you arm yourself with a trolley and go wild.

Read more
Scones, jam and a cup of Earl Grey anyone?

Luxury boutique hotel Flemings Mayfair has recently launched The Drawing Room, London’s most stylish location for afternoon tea.

Read more
Free weekly shop? Yes please!

Win £200 to spend at Asda, one of the country’s leading supermarkets. Asda prides itself in being one of the cheapest places to shop, so you can be sure that your money will go a long way here.

Read more