I’m a member of the Labour party – and a former councillor, cabinet member and parliamentary candidate.
I stood down from Oxford City Council in 2013, after seven wonderful years representing the people of Rose Hill and Iffley.
The thing I’m proudest of as a ward councillor was my role in replacing the almost-derelict Orlit prefabs with 300 new homes on our estate. Rose Hill changed a lot in those years – getting new homes (including new council homes), a brilliant neighbourhood police team, and (something I worked on but which was completed after I stood down), an amazing new community centre.
I was also on Oxford City Council’s cabinet for six years (four of those in a Labour administration). Starting in 2008, we made Oxford the first Living Wage council in the UK. I was able to get increased funding for debt and welfare advice, refurbish every play area in the city and vastly increase activities for young people.
And I was so proud to be part of the Labour administration on Oxford City Council from 2008-2013. We completely transformed the poor value poor performing authority we inherited. Whether it be building a new swimming pool and new community centres, getting tough on rogue landlords and poor quality housing, building homes for local families or reducing carbon emissions, we delivered for our residents. And that record continues: even in tough times, my friends in the Labour administration are still running a council that delivers far more for residents than ever before.
And I’m proud to have campaigned for Labour across the country, over the last 17 years.
In 2010, it was one of my proudest moments to be part of the team that secured the re-election of our brilliant Labour MP, Andrew Smith, in Oxford East. Working together, we won a 6.5% increase in the Labour vote and spoke to more than 40,000 electors in six months, taking up local people’s concerns and making change.
I’ve volunteered at elections in Croydon, Westminster, Southampton and Reading as well as in Oxford, and I’ve travelled to a number of by-elections too. In 2015, I worked for the brilliant Vicky Groulef in Reading West in the last weeks of the campaign.
I stood for Parliament in 2005 in Oxford West and Abingdon, maintaining Labour’s strong third place finish and losing just 1% of the 2001 vote.