Councillor for Woodhouse Park
Born in Liverpool in 1953, I have spent my adult life in Manchester. I joined the Labour Party in 1970 and have been an active member ever since. Working for the Post Office on the counter at main Post Offices, I was elected as a Union organiser. I proudly maintain my membership of the Communication Workers Union.
First elected as a Manchester City Councillor for Blackley in 1979, I left the Council in 1985 following my election the previous year as Euro-MP for Greater Manchester Central. I was twice re-elected and left the European Parliament when the constituency system was abolished in 1999. I then worked for the CWU and the Legal Services Ombudsman. In 2002 I returned to the Council representing Woodhouse Park. I have been re-elected six times, most recently in 2019.
My wife, Sheila, was a senior Councillor with responsibility for Children’s Services. She passed away suddenly in 2018. We have three grown-up daughters.
Over the years, I have campaigned against high food prices and cuts to public services, and for affordable housing and better healthcare provision.
I have chaired the European Parliament’s Committee on Petitions and the Council’s Health Scrutiny Committee. I have had Council responsibility for Housing and been Lord Mayor of Manchester.
My proudest local achievement has been my part in the creation and continuation of the Woodhouse Park Lifestyle Centre – a magnificent community, youth and sports centre.