Mike Tuffrey grew up in Bromley, born in Orpington around the time of the famous by-election. He moved to Brixton when he got his first job, at the time of the riots in the early 1980s. He’s lived in Lambeth ever since.
Mike Tuffrey’s family roots can be traced back to Herne Hill in the 1880s, where his great grandfather worked as a coachman for a grand house, Elfindale Lodge – demolished in the great Victorian house building boom, but whose name lives on as Elfindale Road today. His father grew up in Beckenham and worked in the leather tanning industry in Bermondsey all his life.
Mike qualified as a chartered accountant, and worked as a finance director for a charity before starting up a successful consultancy business, helping large firms become more socially responsible and environmentally sustainable.
His political life started by getting elected to the GLC, representing Vauxhall until 1986, when Ken Livingstone’s squabbles with Mrs Thatcher led to the abolition of London-wide government.
In 1990 Mike Tuffrey was elected to Lambeth Council, and served in leadership roles for 12 years dominated by cleaning up the crisis Labour had caused – the ‘loony left’, the Lambeth ‘fraud and corruption’ scandal, paying down massive debts while struggling to preserve services.
Mike was elected to the London Assembly in February 2002, and re-elected in June 2004 and May 2008. He led the Liberal Democrat group from four years until 2010 and today speaks for the Lib Dems on finance, housing, planning and the environment. Mike is also a member of the London Fire and Emergency Planning Authority, first appointed in 2002 and latterly serving as group leader.
In 2004 Mike was appointed by Mayor Ken Livingstone to represent the Assembly as a member of the London Sustainable Development Commission and reappointed in 2010 by Boris Johnson. In 2007 the Evening Standard named him as one of the thousand most influential Londoners for his work on the environment.
Mike Tuffrey stood down from the London Assembly at the 2012 elections.