The Leader of the Labour Party Sir Keir Starmer arrived in Selby yesterday to support local candidate Keir Mather in his bid to become Selby and Ainsty’s next MP.
Before making a speech at the grounds of Selby Community Centre, Sir Keir first stopped by at the Labour Party’s base on Gowthorpe, Selby, alongside Deputy Leader Angela Rayner.
Here, the pair addressed the region’s need for more affordable housing, inward investment and skills training to compete for employment.
Sir Keir opened by commenting on the importance of homeownership, particularly for those in the area.
He said: “We do need a plan that allows families, young families in particular, to have a chance to get a home of their own. At the moment, the government has turned its back on homeowners, there is no plan and there will be many, many people trapped. This by-election is so important in that respect.
“There is no way that the Conservatives deserve to win this by-election. We need a fresh start. Keir Mather is a fantastic candidate, and we can make history here.”
As questions moved to the issue regarding a lack of opportunities for those living in Selby and its surrounding areas, Angela, who was appointed as Shadow Secretary of State for Education under Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership in 2016, spoke to Selby Times’ reporters.
The Deputy Leader highlighted that the Labour Party were “optimistic about the future”, having developed an “industrial strategy” for large parts of the UK.
She said: “Whether you look at the Future for Work programme that we’ve got, which is about working standards and making sure people have good jobs for the future, or you look at our Industrial Strategy, which hopes to bring in industries to Selby, you’ve got to have a skills strategy as well to ensure people can take these jobs going forward.
“We’re not in traditional jobs anymore, where people go in at 16 and are there for life. People will likely change their employment, so the Skills Strategy has to be part of what we do in the future.”
Sir Keir also spoke of the need for investment, which he said is “shown in good quality jobs” in Selby and its surrounding areas.
He said: “We need to make sure that there is inward investment in Selby and its surrounding areas, so that people don’t feel like they’ve somehow got to leave and go somewhere else.
“They can build their lives here.
“It requires a plan, it requires a strategy, it requires stability, and it requires a Prime Minister that doesn’t sit on his hands the whole time.”
After speaking with the press, the pair made their way to the grounds of Selby Community Centre, where they were joined by Keir Mather and crowds of campaigners for a series of speeches.
Keir Mather addressed Selby constituents, alongside Sir Keir and Deputy Leader Angela Rayner. (06-07-120 ST/CG)