What a three years it has been.
It was 2012 when I decided to run for the Labour nomination for London Mayor because I believed that we needed an ideas-led debate about the future of our city. Anyone who has attended the numerous hustings held over the past three months can attest that we certainly achieved that.
I entered the race as an outsider - nobody expected me to get enough nominations from constituency Labour parties, let alone make the longlist and then the shortlist of candidates. I'd like to thank all the people who nominated me in those early stages and believed in a wide, inclusive debate. I'd also like to thank Labour’s NEC for recognising this and including me on the shortlist.
Most importantly, I'd like to express my gratitude to the fabulously energetic and passionate Wolmar for London team. Built almost entirely on volunteers, many of whom have been a part of the process for as long as I have, through enthusiasm, creativity and tenacity we have achieved more than we thought possible.
Our brilliant policy work has set the agenda throughout this nominations process. It is surely more than mere coincidence that the candidate who admitted that he’d “nicked” our policies went on to win.
My congratulations to Sadiq Khan, who I am sure will make a splendid candidate to take on the Tories next May and win back control of City Hall for the benefit of all Londoners. But also my thanks to the other four national political figures who were shortlisted – Diane, Gareth, Tessa and David – for what was an enjoyable and energetic campaign, in which I was proud to play my part, when I was allowed to.
The Wolmar for London team has succeeded in putting cycling infrastructure and clean air at the heart of the debate about the future of London. We've had policies adopted by almost every rival campaign, from pedestrianising Oxford Street to the one-hour bus pass. Others have swooned over our designs, although no one else is mad enough to flyer every Boris bike in London on a wet Sunday night.
I'm delighted to have got this far and look forward to campaigning with Sadiq in 2016 to achieve a Labour victory.
And I look forward to strolling down a car-free Oxford Street in years to come.