Tag Archives: constituency

  • Three Labour Remainers (in a pub)

    I recently caught up with Alex Sobel, Labour candidate for Leeds North West, and Mike Galsworthy, activist and campaigner for Scientists in the EU and recorded a video of our discussion.

  • Yorkshire, Brexit and the General Election – A film from FRANCE 24 (in English)

    FRANCE 24 came over to Yorkshire to film a piece on how people and politicians in the region felt about Brexit and the General Election. It was a pleasure to take them to University of Leeds and Digital Exchange in Bradford to explore the views of students and the technology community. Pour nos amis français, il ya a une version en français aussi.

  • Honoured to be President of Grimethorpe Colliery Band

    I am thrilled to have been asked to be the Honorary President of world famous Grimethorpe Colliery Band in their Centenary year. I attended the special screening of the film at the Albert Hall where they performed the soundtrack live. A wonderful evening!

  • courtesy Christopher Combe Photography Yorkshire via Flickr

    Why a ‘hard’ Brexit is particularly bad for Yorkshire

    Despite what many Leave campaigners promised during the referendum campaign, Theresa May wants to take Britain out of not just the EU, but also the single European market, the customs union and the various European technical agencies. This approach is particularly dangerous for Yorkshire.

  • Courtesy Grimethorpe band

    Grimethorpe Colliery Band

    I had the great pleasure to attend a superb performance of the Grimethorpe Colliery Band on Saturday – and of being reminded of the significance of the deep-rooted Brass Band tradition. I had the honour of meeting conductor Ian Shires and star cornetist Roger Webster. Brass bands are about music – but more than music. Many are […]

  • courtesy Adam Wyles via Flickr

    Constituents’ contributions

    Amid the media frenzy of the last few days, I’ve been pleased and intrigued to read some heartfelt contributions to the campaign from some of my constituents. With the permission of the various authors, I thought I would share some of these contributions on my blog. Poetry An author who wishes to remain anonymous has sent me […]

  • courtesy 54north via Wikimedia Commons

    Leeds Bradford Airport

    Leeds Bradford Airport is a major player in the economic fortunes of North and West Yorkshire, connecting us not only directly to the rest of Europe but also, both directly and indirectly, to much of the rest of the world. I’ve been there several times since I was re-elected in 2014, and most recently I […]

  • courtesy Chris Allen via geograph.org.uk


    I was delighted to be able to return to Drax, a major power station in my constituency and the second largest in Europe, to talk about the EU referendum with staff and management last week. The main event of the day was an exchange of views on European issues — there was standing room only […]

  • photo from Melanie Onn's office

    MEP tours Grimsby fishing industry

    Richard Corbett, Member of the European Parliament representing Yorkshire and the Humber, joined Grimsby MP Melanie Onn on a tour of Grimsby’s finest fishing businesses on Monday 23 June. Richard Corbett is a member of the European Parliament’s fisheries committee, which monitors and examines current European legislation and proposes changes to the Common Fisheries Policy […]

  • Local fact sheets

    These two-page briefings contain key facts and figures about the EU’s contribution to local life in Yorkshire & Humber.

  • App

    Many appy returns!

    We MEPs represent much larger constituencies than MPs. There are two Labour MEPs — and four from other parties — who cover the whole of Yorkshire & Humber, with its 5.4 million people. I get around a lot, but it’s not possible to visit every single town and village in the region every month! (Fun […]

  • Grimethorpe Colliery band

    Grimethorpe Colliery Band

    I gather that Grimethorpe Colliery Band is to invite me to be their honorary president, which would indeed be a great honour. In any case, I was delighted to meet and learn about one of Yorkshire’s, and indeed Europe’s, top brass bands. It turns out that brass bands, rather like football teams, have a national […]

  • Handwritten letters

    Thoughts from a constituent

    I recently received a fascinating letter from a constituent, Eric Smith, which offers a unique perspective on the EU referendum and Britain’s historical relationship with its European neighbours. With his permission, below are the four pages of his letter. (You can also download the entire letter in PDF format by clicking here.)

  • Working together to save our steel

    This afternoon, British trade unionists from the highly skilled steel industry descended on Brussels with thousands of their colleagues from across Europe. Today saw workers rally outside a European Commission conference on the ‘future of energy intensive industries’, which among other things discussed the all-important reform of EU trade defence policies. The protest takes place […]

  • The Erasmus generation

    Today I had the pleasure of speaking to students at a school in York about how the EU works, what the key issues facing our continent are, and how we can best tackle such issues. Naturally, the talk with the students gravitated toward the looming referendum on Britain’s continued membership of the EU. And it’s […]

  • Collaborating on cancer cures

    Today is World Cancer Day — and we are reminded of the sad fact that, with people now living longer, the risk of getting cancer is dramatically increasing. In 2012, there were an estimated 3.4 million new cases of cancer in Europe, an average of 254 new cancer cases for every 100,000 Europeans. In Yorkshire […]

  • Rebuilding Britain’s flooded communities

    This winter, Britain witnessed all-too-familiar sights. The horrendous impact of flooding across Yorkshire & Humber and many other areas in the UK is clear: tens of thousands of households being left without power or adequate living conditions, public services being suspended and businesses closing for prolonged periods. Piecing together the devastated communities is not something […]

  • Save our steel

    I started the week by joining GMB and Unite — and steel workers from across Europe — in a rally outside the emergency meeting of national governments (at which the UK’s Business Secretary Sajid Javid was present), called to discuss Europe’s steel industry crisis. Five CEOs of steel companies were invited to an informal dinner with […]

  • Steel industry

    Labour Euro MPs call for government action on steel industry

    Labour MEPs Linda McAvan and Richard Corbett have strongly condemned the UK government’s mishandling of the crisis facing the steel industry following the announcement of 900 job losses in Scunthorpe today. Linda said: The fate of the British steel industry must be a priority for David Cameron in light of the talks with Chinese President […]

  • courtesy Smith & Nephew

    Workplace visits

    Over the past couple of months, I’ve been visiting several major employers in Yorkshire & Humber, not least for discussions on how various EU policies and rules affect them. Reflecting on these experiences, two things strike me. The first is simply pride: I’m amazed by the diversity and international reach of the work that’s done […]

  • courtesy of Pixabay

    Real junk food

    There’s a local ‘business’ in my constituency, the first of its kind, which was created just 18 months ago but has spawned more than 80 offshoots across the UK since it first opened its doors. This ‘business’ makes no profit, sets no prices for its services, and has no paid staff — yet its turnover […]

  • Made in Leeds

    Made in Leeds

    I was interested to see that a new local TV station, Made In Leeds, has set up shop not too far from my constituency office. Any media outlet that can offer a genuinely independent, local perspective is very welcome. But when local TV stations have popped up in Yorkshire at various times over the past […]

  • Courtesy of Tomasz Sienicki via Wikimedia Commons

    Revenge of the directory scams

    From correspondence I’ve had with constituents recently, it seems that an old scam has resurfaced. It was previously known as the European City Guide, but seems to have recently reinvented itself as the “United Kingdom Industry Commerce Directory”. Under various names, this shady organisation sends an official-looking form to small businesses, voluntary organisations and even […]

  • Yorkshire Normandy vet awarded French Legion of Honour

    An East Yorkshire resident is to be awarded France’s highest decoration for service in the Normandy D-day campaign 70 years ago. Leslie Skelton, of Tickton near Beverly, is to be presented with the Legion d’honneur medal in a special ceremony at the French embassy, London, on the morning of Armistice Day, 11 November this year. […]

  • Photo by Toby Wardman

    Yorkshire MEP takes to the seas in Grimsby

    Yorkshire MEP Richard Corbett will spend a day in Grimsby this week to learn first-hand about the challenges facing the fishing industry. Following European elections in May, Mr Corbett is now a member of the influential Fisheries Committee of the European Parliament. The committee is highly significant in shaping EU fisheries policy. It has been […]

  • With staff at Kirkwood hospice

    Kirkwood hospice

    On a gloriously sunny Saturday, it was a pleasure to be invited to Kirkwood Hospice‘s summer garden party and fundraising event in Huddersfield. The hospice provides invaluable medical, care and support services for people across the Kirklees area with long-term and life-limiting medical conditions. It also has an education programme, which aims to develop the […]

  • Photo by Roger Oldfield via Wikimedia

    Leeds Bradford airport

    Travelling regularly again between Brussels and Yorkshire has enabled me to renew my acquaintance with Leeds Bradford airport. The changes over the last five years are striking — though not all to the good! For a start, it’s now impossible to drop someone off by car, or pick them up, without paying a parking charge […]

  • Yorkshire Sculpture Park

    Post-Tour, Yorkshire wows with sculpture

    It was a pleasant change from parliamentary discussions about committee chairs when I had the pleasure of hearing Peter Murray, founding director of the Yorkshire Sculpture Park, speak at the European Land Art Network yesterday. This EU-funded project brings together the Yorkshire Sculpture Park and others which display art in a natural setting or use nature as part of art. […]

  • At a Northallerton food bank

    Cost-of-living crisis hits North Yorkshire

    Even in apparently prosperous Northallerton, there is now a food bank helping people who are unable to always afford food for their families. The cost-of-living crisis means that not only the homeless and the unemployed, but even people in work are finding it difficult if they are on the minimum wage, as so many are. […]

  • Members of the Motorcycle Action Group

    Motorcycle hustings

    On Saturday night, I participated in a lively and informative hustings — with candidates from five different parties — organised by the Motorcycle Action Group’s Yorkshire region. Labour’s Members of the European Parliament have always had good links with MAG and, we like to think, an understanding of their concerns, ever since one of our MEPs, Roger […]

  • Talking to voters in Beverley

    Reflections on Yorkshire & Humber

    Campaigning over the last few days has reminded me of how wonderfully varied Yorkshire & the Humber actually is. This weekend, from Bradford to Beverley, from Hull to Holmfirth, from Selby to Shipley, and from York to Yeadon, is itself an illustration. Add recent days from Scarborough to Skipton, Wortley to Wakefield, Barnsley to Bramley […]

  • Campaigning in Hull

    Beverley, Hull

    After the gifts given by Nick Clegg and Maria Miller to UKIP last week, I was half-expecting more UKIP support when I was campaigning in Beverley and in Hull today. In fact, there seemed to be very little. By contrast, large UKIP billboards are appearing in fields and (not always legally) on public ground, financed […]

  • EU funding for Leeds communities

    Having been involved in Brussels in the negotiations on the EU’s new seven-year budget framework, it was fascinating to get an insight into a local community’s plans about how to make good use of it here in Yorkshire, when I attended a consultation workshop held in New Wortley Community Centre earlier this week. Part of […]

  • Campaigning in Farsley

    Guiseley, Menston, Farley

    Another day of Labour doorstepping with local candidates and party activists — this time in Guiseley, Menston and Farley in the Pudsey constituency. Our prospective candidate for Westminster next year, the excellent and hard-working Jamie Hanley, joined me and a team of local activists, including local election candidate David Bowe, a former colleague of mine […]

  • Campaigning in Outwood

    Morley, Outwood

    Morning in Morley, first at a Co-op open meeting with Ed Balls, taking questions from the public, followed by a leafleting round with a huge team of supporters. Then, after enjoying Ed’s delicious lasagne for lunch, a further round of leafleting in Outwood. Altogether, 10,000 letters delivered to households in the area. Anyone in political life […]

  • Cooperative conference

    Horsforth, Scarborough

    I spent the morning on the doorsteps of Horsforth, with Mary Creagh MP, prospective MP candidate Alex Sobel, and over a dozen party members. Then I made my way to Scarborough for the Yorkshire & Humber Cooperative Party conference on the subject of speaking up for the North. There was an excellent analytical speech by […]

  • Leeds, Hull

    A hectic mixture of speaking engagements today. First a hustings debate with candidates from other parties (Conservative, Lib Dem, Greens, and a no-show from UKIP) at Leeds Trinity University with their journalism students. They cast votes in a ballot box after the debate, and I was delighted to see the result: LAB 25, CON 6, […]

  • York Older People's Assembly


    Nice afternoon debating at the York Older People’s Assembly with Green, Lib Dem, and UKIP candidates. The Tories didn’t show up. Another puzzling feature was that, although the lead UKIP candidate for Yorkshire & Humber (a certain J Collins) was in the room, she was replaced for the debate by Roger Helmer, an East Midland […]

  • Campaigning in Yeadon

    Otley, Yeadon

    Sunday lunch was with Labour members in Otley, the lovely market town north of Leeds, with a delicious array of dishes and desserts made by different members. The previous evening, some members had been celebrating at the 70th birthday party of Councillor Pamela Gill, Town Mayor of Otley and a stalwart party member — but […]

  • USDAW meeting

    Skipton, York, Barnsley

    Morning in Skipton at an open public meeting at the Herriot Hotel, where I had great support from the Labour members of the audience. But I hope I even convinced the Tories there to support Labour in the European elections. Pro-European Tories are distressed at the eurosceptic obsession of their party, and they know that […]

  • Shipley, Windhill & Wrose

    Fascinating meeting of Shipley, Windhill and Wrose Labour Party branches, discussing Europe even before I arrived! This, of course, because of the speech by Ed Miliband clarifying Labour’s position on an EU referendum. There was much support for his position ruling out such a referendum in current circumstances. If anything, members seemed to wish that […]

  • Guiseley

    Good meeting in Guiseley with members of the local Labour Party including former MP Paul Truswell and former MEP David Bowe. One member gave an amusing account of how he had been in his local pub when several UKIPers came in, with rosettes and balloons, for what they said was their inaugural event in the […]

  • Supporting fair trade

    Shipley, Hull, Wath-upon-Dearne, Wakefield

    Just had a good couple of days of meeting people to talk about Europe, and what’s at stake in the elections. I dropped into the event organised in Wakefield by the excellent Linda McAvan MEP to mark International Women’s Day, at which Labour’s leader in the European Parliament, Glenis Willmott, also spoke. Its remit was […]

  • Chairing the Colne Valley Europe quiz

    Colne Valley

    Great quiz night at Colne Valley Labour Party, thanks to a mammoth quiz prepared by Pat Colling. Questions ranged from European history to the Eurovision Song Contest via fashion, flags, geography, the EU itself, and… famous mistresses of monarchs and politicians! It was lovely to see old friends and new members as well as the […]

  • Leeds, Beeston and Holbeck

    Nice to have afternoon tea in Leeds and to chat with members of the European Movement from Yorkshire & Humber. Then off to Beeston to meet Labour party members and councillors from Beeston and Holbeck. Besides discussing practicalities of the election campaign, there was intense debate about Ukraine and what can be done about it. […]

  • Grimsby Fabian meeting 2014

    Visiting Grimsby Fabians

    Did an interview with one of the new local TV stations – Estuary TV, based in North Lincs. Good set of questions asked by its reporter James Dunn, though I doubt they’ll use the full 18 minutes of questions and answers we did! Then a lively meeting with the Grimsby Fabians. As one would expect […]

  • Richard on Newsnight

    Things are starting to hot up

    With just twelve weeks to go to polling day, now’s the time to start a campaign blog. In this blog, I’ll recount my campaigning activities and address issues I’ve encountered both on the doorstep and in public meetings. Things are indeed beginning to hot up. This weekend was the congress of the Party of European […]