Kensington and Chelsea
Hugo Charlton, 48, is a practising criminal barrister and is married
with two small children. He is the Green Party Law Officer and Chairman
of the Policy Committee. He has been a Green Party member for over ten
years serving in a number of capacities including as a member of the
Green Party Council.
He was born in Kensington, was married in Chelsea, and has lived most
of his life in the constituency. He married Jane Sidnell, an antiques
dealer, in 1994.
After leaving York University he travelled extensively, overland from
New York to Buenos Aires and from London to Delhi. Qualifying as a
barrister in 1978, he became a professional traveller, exporting whisky
in the Far East, Central and South America.
He returned to the bar in 1986 and works from Pump Court in the
His experiences of everyday life in the Magistrates Courts, combined
with an awareness of the alternatives presented by new economics, led
him into the Green Party.
He was part of the team which brought the High Court cases of
ex.partes Blatchford and Bullard. The three judges, chaired by Lord
Nolan confirmed that the Poll Tax legislation was fundamentally flawed
("the computer evidence point"), a ruling which has been described as
the death knell of the Poll Tax. He had consistently campaigned for, and
appeared on behalf of, those unable to pay, (as well as more famous
refusniks such as the MPs Ken Livingstone and Terry Fields). He
describes it as a "flat rate tax ….. which even Adam Smith did not
His concern for the underdog is matched by his general concern for
animals. In particular he has fought against live animal export, an
issue to which he was abruptly introduced when complaining about the
livestock's conditions on the Dover to Calais ferry in 1992 and was
promptly assaulted by the driver. He has sought to bring animal issues
into the mainstream of the political process
He also took part in the protests against the M11 and other road
building projects, and successfully ended plans by Guilford Council to
put a bypass through Stringers Common. He was active in opposing the
Criminal Justice and Public Order Act and is currently a trainer in the
Bar Council's Human Rights Training Program.
He stood as a Councilor (Courtfield ward Kensington) and for
Parliament (Epsom & Ewell 1997) and was the candidate for Surrey in the
1994 European elections.
He proposes to campaign for the Kensington & Chelsea by-election on a
more environmental ticket but anticipates issues of personal freedom,
privacy and intrusion by the State among other bodies may arise. He will
argue that capitalism as we know it is not working.
His campaign issues are a continuation of
those on which the Green Party fought the European Election - Safe food
and a healthy environment -