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Dodds sacked

Starmer shuffles front bench after election debacle

Sir Keir Starmer iin Edinburgh

Sir Keir Starmer in Edinburgh during the campaign (pic: Terry Murden)

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer has reshuffled his front bench team following the disastrous by-election defeat in Hartlepool and the loss of council seats across the country.

He had already sacked party chairman and campaigns organiser Angela Rayner and, as predicted, he has removed Anneliese Dodds as Shadow Chancellor, replacing her with Rachel Reeves.

Ms Rayner is moved to Shadow First Secretary of State, Shadow Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Shadow Secretary of State for the Future of Work.

It had been thought that Jonathan Ashworth would lose his health portfolio but he remains in post.

Ian Murray remains Shadow Scottish Secretary.


The moves follow a crushing defeat in Hartlepool, a seat held by Labour since 1974, and the loss of control of eight councils.

Sir Keir, who was accused of scapegoating Ms Rayner after saying he would take personal responsibility for the poor election results, accepted that the party had to change. Senior figures claimed it had become too London-centric.

He said: “The Labour Party must be the party that embraces the demand for change across our country.

“That will require bold ideas and a relentless focus on the priorities of the British people. Just as the pandemic has changed what is possible and what is necessary, so Labour must change too.

“In the last 24 hours we have seen fantastic results for Labour Metro Mayors, as well as the Labour government in Wales under Mark Drakeford. They have shown the difference Labour can make in power, standing up for their communities.

“We have seen Labour begin to turn around its fortunes in Scotland under the leadership of Anas Sarwar. These results give us optimism and inspiration for the future. The challenge for us now is to build upon these successes and learn from the places we lost.

“I look forward to working with our refreshed and renewed team to take on that challenge, deliver that change and build the ambitious programme that will deliver the next Labour government.”

Labour’s Shadow Cabinet team is as follows:

·       Deputy Leader, Shadow First Secretary of State, Shadow Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Shadow Secretary of State for the Future of Work:     Angela Rayner

·       Party Chair & Chair of Labour Policy Review:                                      Anneliese Dodds

·       National Campaign Coordinator:                                                       Shabana Mahmood

·       Shadow Chief Whip:                                                                       Alan Campbell

·       Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer:                                               Rachel Reeves

·       Shadow Chief Secretary to HM Treasury:                                           Bridget Phillipson

·       Shadow Secretary of State for Foreign & Commonwealth Affairs:                 Lisa Nandy

·       Shadow Secretary of State for the Home Department:                           Nick Thomas-Symonds

·       Shadow Secretary of State for Justice:                                              David Lammy

·       Shadow Secretary of State for Defence:                                            John Healey

·       Shadow Secretary of State for Health and Social Care:                           Jonathan Ashworth

·       Shadow Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy: Ed Miliband

·       Shadow Secretary of State for Work and Pensions:                             Jonathan Reynolds

·       Shadow Secretary of State for International Trade:                            Emily Thornberry

·       Shadow Secretary of State for Education:                                         Kate Green

·       Shadow Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport:            Jo Stevens

·       Shadow Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs:         Luke Pollard    

·       Shadow Secretary of State for Communities & Local Government:         Steve Reed

·       Shadow Secretary of State for Housing:                                            Lucy Powell 

·       Shadow Secretary of State for Transport:                                          Jim McMahon

·       Shadow Secretary of State for International Development:                 Preet Gill

·       Shadow Secretary of State for Wales:                                               Nia Griffith 

·       Shadow Secretary of State for Scotland:                                           Ian Murray

·       Shadow Secretary of State for Northern Ireland:                                 Louise Haigh

·       Shadow Secretary of State for Women and Equalities:                         Marsha de Cordova

·       Shadow Leader of the House of Commons :                                        Thangam Debbonaire   

·       Shadow Attorney General:                                                              Charlie Falconer

·       Shadow Secretary of State for Mental Health:                                    Rosena Allin-Khan

·       Shadow Secretary of State for Child Poverty:                                     Wes Streeting

·       Shadow Secretary of State for Young People and Democracy:          Cat Smith

·       Shadow Secretary of State for Employment Rights & Protections: Andy McDonald

·       Shadow Leader of the House of Lords:                                              Angela Smith

·       Opposition Chief Whip in the House:                                                 Tommy McAvoy

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