Glenda Jackson to make it official: ‘I’m not standing again’
GLENDA Jackson is due at Labour GC tonight for a speech full of thanks but ultimately confirming the biggest non-secret in north London politics: she’s won’t stand for Hampstead and Kilburn again and will retire undefeated at the ballot box at the next General Election.
And so the background jostling to find a new Glenda will come to the forefront in the local Labour party. The party will have to decide whether the constituency will be subject an all-woman shortlist. There is a bit of resistance to this locally with that natural irritation at having rules thrust on them.
It’s an intriguing situation. Over the last two years, scores of names have been linked with this seat. Everybody from Tony McNulty to Oona King to Eddie Izzard. Fiona Millar is named again and again.
Some of the faces up at the Town Hall, who feel they have served their apprenticeships in council politics and deserve a fair shot, would certainly be frustrated if another ‘outsider’ strolled in and collected the spoils. Three serving councillors are definitely interested: Mike Katz, Tulip Siddiq, Camden’s leisure chief, and Sally Gimson. Thomas Gardiner is also mentioned and the gossip machine naturally chit-chats about council leader Sarah Hayward. Dealing with the ‘do you want to be an MP’ is almost part of being a London council leader, just ask Claire Kober in Haringey or Catherine West in Islington.
The local group, in general, say they see her manifesto for the leadership as a pledge not to desert the leader’s office for Parliament straightaway. Whenever this is mentioned in her corridor, however, her Labour colleagues often then add: ‘But we’ll see’. It’s all a guessing game which only a master gambler could win at.
Personally, as a Tory and a monarchist, I have little in common with Miss Jackson but I am nevertheless saddned to hear she will be standing down from Parliament. She is a lady of great integrity and, while I do think it a shame (and, indeed, it smacks of ingratitude) that a woman who was made famous for playing a Queen should be quite such a high-profile anti-monarchist, she has always been an extremely dilligent, hard-working and honourable parliamentarian. Obviously, Oona King’s recent ennoblement puts her out of the picture but, please, Labour; you can do much better than Fiona Millar. Eddie Izzard would seem a fitting replacement, as a fellow thespian!
Never mind the politics, being a South East boy from Kent and close to Hervey Rd Blackheath, I have always had a healthy respect for GJ. In the words of one Michael C “not a lot of people know that” Glenda has also worked on the Cross Commons Hospice Committee which has been invaluable.
Putting the politics back in for a moment, at the last GE count I spoke to Glenda and she said if she lost to Chris Philp it would be bad but to lose to Ed Fordham would be a ¤¤¤¤¤¤¤ disaster.
However you look at Glenda I am sure we all wish her a long & happy retirement from main stream poltics.
You contenders have a hard to follow!
As I said when I stood for leader, I won’t be seeking selection. Anyone gossiping that I might is desperately ill informed.
That should put a few paranoid minds at rest
Number of Labour Cllrs uniting across the country to vote against/refuse to implement cuts!
Any takers, Camden Cllrs????????????