Labour chooses Josh Fenton-Glynn
Monday, 5 February 2018
As first reported on the HebWeb on Saturday afternoon, 3 February, Josh Fenton-Glynn has been selected as Labour’s candidate for the Calder Valley constituency at the next general election.
Having grown up in the Calder Valley, Josh is a Calderdale councillor for Calder Ward and in last June's general election came within 609 votes of winning the marginal seat for Labour. He works as a campaigner on food poverty and lives with his wife in Hebden Bridge having previously lived in Brighouse.
The old Halifax Minster has probably not seen anything like for a very long time. 350-400 of the 2200 Labour Party members of the Calder Valley constituency packed into the old church’s pews for the hustings; a good proportion from Hebden Bridge.
The Minster is 900 years old and used to have weekly markets and regular political meetings. So there is a tradition of political meetings. “Except today,” members were told, “there would be no throwing of eggs or tomatoes.”
Four candidates had been shortlisted. Josh Fenton-Glyn who stood as the Labour Party candidate at the last two general elections. Along with Maggie Smallwood, Stanley Wilson and Taiba Yasseen. Several people commented to the HebWeb afterwards, saying that all those short-listed had the potential to be an excellent MP.
Short-listed andidates pointed to the inadequacy of Craig Whittaker as an MP. It was said that he hasn’t spoken in Parliament for 8 months.
The Calder Valley constituency
The Calder Valley constituency includes Hebden Bridge, Sowerby Bridge, Todmorden, Mytholmroyd, Luddenden Foot, Cragg Vale, Brighouse, Hipperholme & Lightcliffe, Rishworth, Rastrick and Elland.
"Proud to be selected"
Speaking after the selection at Halifax Minster, Josh said, “Calder Valley is my home and I am proud to be selected as Labour’s candidate for the next general election. The sitting MP has failed the constituency supporting cuts to school building programmes, proposed A&E closures and opposing flood defence spending. We need an MP who will be Calder Valley's voice in Westminster, Craig Whittaker just wants to be Theresa May's voice in Calder Valley.
“The Tories have overseen the biggest cuts to our public services in a generation. The NHS and social care is in crisis, our schools are struggling under the weight of budget cuts and cuts to police budgets are putting our safety at risk.
“West Yorkshire has almost a thousand fewer police officers compared with 2010 and almost 200 fewer PCSOs. Recorded crime is up by 15 per cent. The Tories want you to think this is a coincidence but the decisions the Tories make in Government, backed by Tory MPs in seats such as Calder Valley, directly impact upon local people.
“We should be backing those who keep us safe, not cutting their funding and their numbers year on year.
“We deserve better than that. And that’s why I’m standing for Labour. So local people will have an MP and government who puts them first. I will work tirelessly to let local people know there is a a choice between a Labour Party that will stand up for the many and a Conservative Party that only looks after the privileged few.”