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Sunday, 22 November 2020

No Holding Back - The Podcast

Previously featured on Zelo Street, No Holding Back seeks to reconnect with those working class communities where many voters placed their cross in The Blue Team’s box last December. The result was that many constituencies which had previously been solidly Labour were lost, with others seeing drastically reduced majorities.

As NHB has reminded us, the decline in Labour’s fortunes in many working class areas has not suddenly happened: the party’s vote there has been steadily eroding since the high water mark of the Blair years. The idea, infamously pitched by Peter Mandelson, that the working class had “nowhere else to go”, was blown apart last year.

It is not for anyone inside or outside Labour to second guess those electorates, to tell them that they were wrong in electing a Tory MP, and it will not do merely to tell them “We told you so” when the promises of “Levelling up” turn out to be so much more Tory spin. Labour needs to reconnect with those communities positively and constructively.

Ian Lavery MP

One problem that MPs like Jon Trickett have identified is the lack of Parliamentary candidates from those working class communities. This has left the door open for the Tories to pitch populist right-wingers as being more in touch with those communities. There has been too much parachuting in of outsiders over the years.

Yes, Labour has always had middle class MPs, but alongside Attlee there were Aneurin Bevan and Ernie Bevan. Harold Wilson wanted to get Frank Cousins into Parliament, and was briefly successful in doing so. Tony Benn formed a close relationship with Dennis Skinner. Tony Blair kept John Prescott as his deputy.

Cllr Laura Smith

And although Keir Starmer has Angela Rayner as his deputy and party chair, the party has struggled, whoever has been leader, in those areas Labour has to win back to stand any chance of forming the next Government. Also, the message is not getting out there to combat media characterisation of Labour as being metropolitan and elitist.

How can Labour square this particular circle? That is what No Holding Back will address in a series of ten podcasts, starting this evening at 1900 hours. As with the launch presentation, Jon Trickett, who represents Hemsworth, will be joined by Wansbeck MP Ian Lavery and Councillor Laura Smith, formerly MP for Crewe and Nantwich and who now represents Crewe South ward on Cheshire East Council.

Jon Trickett MP

You will be able to listen to the podcast HERE. The No Holding Back Facebook page can be found HERE. They’re on Twitter at @NBack20. And you can get their report, No Holding back - The Challenge For Labour, HERE.

[This is not sponsored content. It’s being promoted here because it’s a useful and much needed initiative]

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Anonymous said...

My parents live in what was red country- South Yorkshire. They were shocked when blue won. I asked them why and they came out with "working class area".

I asked them to look around them. The area they live was built on the back of the mines and steelworks wages earned in the 1950s and 60s. The miners strike scarred the community, the Battle of Orgreave was in their back yard.
My dad was part of the supply chain working as an engineer for 25 years

Now the pits are gone and the land modern housing estates, with BMWs and Mercs in the drive. The residents working in well paid jobs, including my sister and her husband, both in financial services. The result of the conservative "dream" - work hard and look after yourself. Its not difficult to see what has changed, unless you wear a red rosette.

I saw part of Annelise Dodds interview on Marr this morning and her response to a potential public sector pay freeze was shocking. It was like 2010 repeated - "if you don't pay public sector they don't spend".

At no point did she state that the public sector (including those employed by the private sector, but undertaking public sector duties) are at the heart of Covid - 19 and they deserve significant recognition for what many have been through over the last 9 months, with at least another 12 months work to do, especially after 10 years of austerity.

No furlough for those staff, many working far more hours than working time directive permits, not taking holidays and mucking in when required.

Ambulance Trusts
Care workers

are the obvious ones.

Less so

Emergency planning staff
Supply chain support workers
Business Rates
Registrars dealing with thousands of deaths
Crematoria staff
Transport and highways
Planning and building control
Estates departments
Environmental health
Adult and childrens social services

It was a huge miss in front of an open goal.

Anonymous said...

TIP: Don't hold your breath.

Starmer isn't placed there to restore Labour founding principles.

Like Bliar/Brown he's there to betray everything the party stands for. Like them, he's a hypocritical oily spiv. The most dishonest face in politics, eyes like a shithouse rat.

Jonathan said...

Our local Labour MP Cat Smith told me back in 2015, she feared she would be one of the last working class MPs in Parliament.
Increasingly politics is rarely taught in English State schools, so without that input how are working class kids going to get Interested in politics unless their families are?

With ZHCs and insecure employment, a high cost of living, very few can afford to make the financial sacrifices needed.

What is needed is a bursary scheme to support prospective working class Labour candidates.