I have been the Labour Member of the European Parliament for the East Midlands since 2006 and I’m Labour’s Leader in Europe.

In the European Parliament

I was elected as Leader of the European Parliamentary Labour Party in January 2009 and re-elected following the European elections in June 2009 and May 2014.


In the European Parliament I am a full member of the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety Committee. Responsibilities of the committee include environmental protection measures, regulating pharmaceutical and cosmetic products, and taking measures to ensure our food is safe and properly labelled.

I am a substitute member of the Employment & Social Affairs Committee.

I am Vice Chair of the Delegation for Relations with Canada and a substitute member of the Delegation for relations with Switzerland and Norway and to the EU-Iceland Joint Parliamentary Committee and the European Economic Area (EEA) Joint Parliamentary Committee

Read more about the role of an MEP here.

I have produced an A5 leaflet outlining my work and that of Labour MEPs, suitable for strett stalls or more general distribution.

Other appointments

I am a member of the Labour Party National Executive Committee and also attend Shadow Cabinet.

I’m Honorary Vice President of the Local Government Association and Vice President of the Labour Movement for Europe.

In the European Parliament I am a member of the MEPs against Cancer Forum.

My background

I was born in 1951 in Horden, Co. Durham.

I have an HNC in medical science, specialising in Clinical Chemistry (circa 1974); an HNC specialising in Haematology (circa 1984). I worked as a Medical Scientist from 1969-1987.

I was Parliamentary Assistant to Alan Meale, MP for Mansfield 1987-1990. From 1990-2006 I worked as a trade union officer for the GMB Union in the East Midlands.

My Labour Party experience includes: Regional Board member, East Midlands Labour Party (1990-present). Two terms as Chair of Regional Labour Party, most recently 2002-2004. In the GMB Trade Union: political officer (1990-2006); organiser (1992-1995); senior organiser (1995-2006). Secretary, East Midlands Trade Union and Labour Party Liaison Committee (1990-2006).

I was a County Councillor on Nottinghamshire County Council (1989-1993).

I was a Member of the TUC regional council from 1990-2004.

I’m married to Ted and live in Leicestershire.

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