John Prescott – 1970 Maiden Speech to the House of Commons

Below is the text of the maiden speech made by John Prescott, the then Labour MP for Kingston upon Hull East, in the House of Commons on 14 July 1970.

I crave the indulgence of the House so that I may embark on the ritualistic ordeal associated with maiden speeches which I hope will be neither too lengthy nor too boring.

Commander Pursey, whom I have the honour to succeed, made a distinct impression during his 25 years’ service in the House. He was an orphan who joined the Royal Navy as a rating where his ability was quickly recognised. He was promoted eventually to the rank of commander—a considerable achievement in those days. This experience, combined with a period in journalism when he wrote on naval affairs, gave him an unparalleled range of experience and detailed knowledge of naval matters, from anchors and chains to the broader philosophy of naval policy. He was able to use this to great effect in debates in the House on naval matters. Divorced of personal ambition, he sought to use his skill and energy to improve the lot of those less fortunate. Many will remember his efforts on behalf of orphans in the debates on the Royal Naval School for orphans at Greenwich.

The House may not fully appreciate the extent of Commander Pursey’s constituency work, which included his efforts, against tremendous opposition, in bringing about the raising of the banks of the River Hull, whose continual flooding caused a great deal of anxiety and misery to people in the East Hull constituency. He was both colourful and controversial, and his presence will be sorely missed in the House.

Kingston upon Hull is the home of Britain’s largest port. It is third in the value of tonnage handled and is surrounded by a diversity of industries of national and international repute. Their importance has been recognised by the number of awards which have recently been made to them for their export performance.

Hull is equally renowned for its advance health and welfare services, well-established comprehensive education and architecturally-awarded council housing estates built by its own direct-labour department. They are the evidence of the foresight and planning of a post-war Labour local authority.

However, Hull’s greatest asset is its people whose warm Yorkshire hospitality and generosity and shrewd judgment of character and appreciation of value are universally renowned. Never was this so amply demonstrated than in the recent General Election when the Labour candidate was elected with no evidence of the national swing against the Labour Party. I like to think that this was due to the personal qualities of the candidate, although I am prepared to accept that the advent of Hull’s first 12 months of rule by a Tory council since before the war in which rents were raised from £3 to £9 a week played no small part.

Kingston upon Hull has a consistent record of electing Members with seagoing experience and understanding. As long ago as 1890, it offered Samuel Plimsoll the opportunity to represent it in this House. Commander Pursey served his period in the Royal Navy, whereas I served for 10 years as a seaman rating in the Merchant Service. In fact, I am the first seaman sponsored by the National Union of Seamen to be elected to the House. Of that I am particularly proud. I will endeavour to put the point of view of the British seafarer and that of the East Hull constituents, many of whom are seamen, particularly on legislation affecting the welfare of seafarers and the shipping industry. Indeed, I shall be pressing the Government to implement legislation to correct many of the faults which have been made obvious in the recent Reports of the Rochdale Committee of Inquiry into shipping, the Pearson Inquiry and the more recent safety report.

May I also advise the Government that the seamen sincerely hope that they will honour the promise of the previous Government, who in their much-awaited reform of the Merchant Shipping Acts promised to review the penal clauses within a three-year period. The seamen will not tolerate those penal clauses remaining in the Acts. I hope that the Government will take due note of this, particularly as this was the running sore which led to the problem of the 1966 strike.

It is fortunate and appropriate that I have been given the opportunity to make my maiden speech on a Bill directly affecting the future of Hull. No constituency is so dependent on the future growth and development of its port. Much of the local industry is in some way or other, directly or indirectly, associated with the development of a transport economy and the port of Hull.

The port covers seven miles of river bank, 12 miles of quays and 11 docks. The new £7 million container berth, which is evidence of its desire for greater trade, was recently opened by Her Majesty the Queen. It is situated on a major undeveloped estuary, recommended for consideration as a maritime industrial development area, ideally suited as the gateway to Europe and serviced by canals which transport over 50 per cent. of its exports and imports to the industrial heart of the Midlands and Yorkshire. It enjoys a potential not unlike that of Rotterdam 10 years ago. The Port of Hull has all the assets but is prevented from success, like Cinderella, by her ugly sisters, represented in this case by the lack of capital and imaginative co-ordinated planning.

The Government could go some way in using their powers to raise the loans referred to in the Bill to correct some of the glaring examples of the failure to co-ordinate the overall planning of a port system and an overall transport network. Ports are purely the links between internal transport systems and sea transport systems. These sectors are part of a vertically integrated industrial system in which each part is vital to the operation of the whole.

Failure to appreciate that important principle has led to the building in Hull of a container berth which is required to pay for itself without the essential requirement of a container crane. Indeed, the Rochdale inquiry into the docks, reporting in 1962, pointed out in paragraph 280 of its Report that the ports of railway origin, of which Hull is one, should provide a choice of transport. Those who have taken the decisions concerning the development of Hull’s port have taken this extremely literally and have proceeded to rip up all the railway lines on the dock, losing the vital traffic of coal and timber and providing no rail line on the new container port, which is one of the essentials of a container transportation system, resulting in the rundown of the railway and the shutting of workshops. The excuse which is continually given for these activities is a rundown of traffic, which is the direct result of faulty planning decisions. We have recently heard that a restriction is to be placed upon the freightliner centre, which is situated on the wrong side of the city. We are now, apparently, to lose or to have the freightliner services very much restricted. We shall certainly be saying something about this to the Minister.

The Port of Hull is serviced by, possibly, one of the worst road systems facing any port in the country. We will be pressing to have something done about the infrastructure, which includes the roads, on which the Government were elected. We hope to enjoy the benefit of road works. It is essential that we have immediate access to the industrial hinterland, from where we must draw the cargoes for the very survival and expansion of the port.

In 1962, Lord Rochdale recommended the provision of a bridge crossing the river and said that this should be provided if the Midlands continued to expand and exports to Europe continued to develop. Both these things have happened. We therefore look to the Government to make a definite statement about a Humber bridge, which is essential to regional development and to the port.

In giving the Minister that advice, however, I must confess that it would fail to meet the essential ingredient which has been so lacking in the past: that is, developed, co-ordinated planning, which could be envisaged only by a National Ports Authority with executive powers. In presenting the Bill, the Government have made it clear that, as they promised, they intend to reject the essential provisions that were embodied in the previous Government’s Bill and were designed to tackle the fundamental problems facing port development.

I should, therefore, like to point out to the Government that in their consideration of the alternatives, they should give due weight to the innate conservatism which bolsters traditional attitudes with little prospect of change among those who have mismanaged this vital sector of our economy. To my mind, this can be changed only by a fundamental reorganisation of the industry, beginning with public ownership and accompanied by the implementation of industrial democracy, so that the vast knowledge and experience of the port workers are fully utilised and there is a breaking-down of authoritarian management’s attitude which is typical of both ports and shipping industries.

It is no coincidence that the criticisms made of the port industry by Lord Rochdale in his 1962 Report on the ports were followed and repeated almost word for word by the recent Rochdale Inquiry on shipping. Both industries are fragmented by both growth rates and the multiplicity of ownership, documents and procedures, contributing to their visible decline, and accompanied by bad industrial relations and low wages for dock workers until they were recently changed by a Labour Government.

It is not my intention to discuss the present dispute, which is a further manifestation of the organisation of these industries. It should be noted by the Government that almost exactly the same problems are peculiar to both docks and shipping and, I suggest, for exactly the same reason. Both have a history of casual labour, controlled in the supply by the employer, disciplined by means of fines and penalties, plagued by a higher record of occupational accidents and deaths and further soured by the lack of welfare facilities and amenities. The means of trade union representation through shop stewards, so fiercely resisted by both these industries, has only recently been implemented.

As labour has become less cheap, both industries have found means of securing cheaper labour, with the exploitation of Asiatic seamen for shipping and, in the case of the Port of Hull, by the diversion of cargoes to fly-by-night non-registered ports such as Flixborough, Howden Dyke, New Holland and Whitby, using cheap labour, unsafe working practices and little capital investment which is required by the major ports to develop.

The Rochdale Inquiries on both ports and shipping found that one of the cardinal reasons explaining the failure of both these industries could be traced to the general low quality of management in those sectors. This has recently been confirmed ten years later in the Report on shipping. Private management has visibly failed in both these important sectors of our economy.

The only solution is to take both industries into public ownership in the interests of the nation. As a first step in regard to the docks, I suggest that the Government should implement Sir Arthur Kirby’s recent suggestion to rid the docks of the private employers and go on further, I hope, to take the docks into public ownership. Those are the only sort of actions that will solve the major problems in both docks and shipping.

John Prescott – 2003 Speech to Labour Party Conference

Below is the text of the speech made by John Prescott to the 2003 Labour Party Conference.

Conference, after six years in government I’ve picked up a few titles.

Civil servants call me “DPM”. I’m JP to my friends. To the press I’m “Two Jags” or “Four pads”. But the title that makes me the proudest is “DL”. DL? Deputy Leader. Deputy leader of the greatest party there is. The Labour party. A great party. A great conference.

We confounded the doom and gloom merchants in the press didn’t we? They predicted disaster, a return to the 70s and 80s. The media saw blood on my collar during Monday’s speech. That’s progress. A few years ago, in the bad old days, they ‘d have been reporting the blood all over the conference floor.

Last weekend the headlines predicted a week of reversals. We’ve only had a couple. And now we know why, don’t we? We haven’t got a reverse gear. But as one delegate said yesterday, “if you go in the right direction you don’t really need one, do you?”

Yesterday we honoured two comrades. Jack Jones and Michael Foot who symbolise the two wings of our great movement: the industrial and the political. Never forget that. They did so much to make the party what it is today.

We didn’t hear them speak, but then we didn’t need to. Their life’s work spoke volumes for them.

But we did hear two powerful speeches this week: one from Gordon, one from Tony. Weren’t they magnificent? And you showed it, in the reception you gave them.

The press were shocked that a Labour MP, a Labour chancellor in a Labour government used the word “Labour” in a speech to Labour conference. And that a Labour prime minister, used the word “Labour” as well. Mind you, as many times as he said “New Labour”, actually. It’s funny, I’ve been using the word “Labour” for years and no one’s ever given me stick for it.

Two great speeches. Packed full of Labour values and Labour government achievements. That’s the real story.

We heard Gordon’s passionate words:

“… Labour policies have achieved the longest period of continuous and sustained economic growth in the last 50 years… and “there are today in Britain more people in work – 28 million – than at any time in our history.”

And we heard Tony’s powerful reminder that:

“… we can be proud of the new money in our schools and health service, proud that this year, last year and next year, spending on health and education is rising faster here than in any other major country.”

That’s economic competence and full employment, giving us – at long, long last – economic prosperity and social justice.

Wasn’t that what we’ve always wanted? Wasn’t it why we fought through all those bitter Tory years? Why we worked so hard together?

So, two powerful speeches from Tony and Gordon.

And this conference knows, this party knows, the whole country knows, that these two achieve more by their common endeavour than they do alone.

Conference, this is where we sort out our differences, within the party. I’m pleased our debates have been open and constructive. That makes for better decisions. Progress means change, yes. And change is often controversial. But the most controversial issues are sometimes those that are least discussed.

So this week we’ve debated foundation hospitals, tuition fees, PPPs, and pensions. All of them controversial. We all agree on what we want. Better hospitals, more investment in public services, more of our people going to university, dignity if retirement. But, of course, we have differences about how to achieve them.

I remember the huge row over the national minimum wage. Not about how much it should be. The other row. Many years ago. About whether to have one at all.

A few of us battled hard against massed ranks of those claiming that a national minimum wage would destroy the principle of free collective bargaining.

So it was controversial. But we worked it through.

And so this week the trade unions were able to place full-page newspaper advert calling, amongst other things, for a higher minimum wage. A call made possible only because we’ve now got a national minimum wage to raise.

It is a reality. And it’s already lifted millions out of poverty pay.

So, it’s important to have the debates, no matter how controversial.

Unfortunately too many people, in all parts of the party and on all sides of arguments, say, “listen” when they really mean “listen and then do as I say”.

Now Tony and I have our discussions. In private. And we have our ups and downs. But when we do disagree I don’t rush out and issue a press release. Or brief the newspapers.

I do my job as the deputy leader. I do what you expect of me. I do my best to put the views of the party. Sometimes when we disagree he turns out to be wrong. It’s good to know Tony’s human. I was beginning to wonder.

But sometimes I turn out to be wrong. Take our clause 4.

Just after the two of us were elected, he told me he wanted to change the party’s constitution. I said “Oh no”, or words to that effect.

So I told him if we’re going to do it, do it properly. Consult the wider party. Engage with members. Persuade them.

And we did. And it was a success. We adopted a more relevant statement of our values. Traditional values in a modern setting.

I especially like the first line, don’t you? How does it go? “We are a democratic socialist party”

So I welcome participation and debate. I always have done.

And now we need to start a new debate, having the confidence to listen to the party and listen to the country.

As Tony said on Tuesday: “This must not be a discussion just between us. Because if we want a government in touch with the party, we must have a party in touch with the people.”

But conference, I believe that any debate with the country must start within the party itself.

Every section of the party – all of us – must have a part in that process:

· trade unionists – the legitimate voice of working people;

· socialist societies, bringing so many new ideas to our debates;

· MPs, assembly members and MEPs – working hard to represent their constituents;

· Labour councillors – doing a difficult job with little thanks;

· and party members – the lifeblood of our movement in local communities.

Let’s remember though, that we must – all of us – be prepared to think it possible that we are mistaken. We must be prepared to be persuaded in the argument by the force of the argument. We must be prepared to change our minds.

But the right to be consulted brings with it an obligation to participate responsibly. But, I have to tell you, I have more chance of hearing the views of few of our more critical MPs on the TV, than in the place where we are supposed to air our differences: at the weekly meeting of the parliamentary Labour party.

And when I go to party events around the country, hard-working party activists ask me “why do Labour MPs write articles, especially in the Tory Daily Mail, attacking a Labour government?” Even during the critical Brent byelection.

I have to tell them, “I don’t know”, “I can’t understand it myself”.

Mind you, chair, I should declare an interest. I’ve had an offer myself. Don’t laugh – it’s good money. All I have to do is write my memoirs.

The Daily Mail say they’ll serialise it. And another newspaper wants a weekly column. All for six-figure sums apparently.

But I looked at the small print. First, it said I have to resign from the cabinet. Second, no articles supporting Labour. To earn that kind of money I’ve got to do something else: I’ve got to slag off the government and my former colleagues.

Then it says: “don’t worry if you take a different position now to the one you took in cabinet – we’ll just say that shows what an independent thinker you are”.

Well conference, I haven’t been an MP for 33 years just to use the Daily Mail to attack any Labour government, let alone this one.

So let me say to those in our party who claim that the government has betrayed Labour’s values.

Our achievements would have been celebrated by our party at any time in its history.

Keir Hardie would have rejoiced at our implementation of his minimum wage. Nye Bevan could only dream of the level of investment we are making in his health service.

Any Labour leader, at any time in history, would be proud that we are lifting millions of our children out of absolute poverty, and cutting the debt burden of the poorest nations in the world.

That’s not betrayal. I call it democratic socialism.

So listening is important. Proper debate is important and respect for other people’s opinions is important too

But so is leadership. And we’ve been reminded of that this week, haven’t we?

Seeing Tony in action underlines just what a great leader we have.

On Sierra Leone, on Kosovo, on Afghanistan and, yes, on Iraq, when he saw the need to act, he acted. As a leader. He couldn’t walk by on the other side.

And what was the result? Small children no longer have their arms and legs hacked off in a vicious civil war in Sierra Leone. Ethnic cleansing in Kosovo stopped. A million Muslims back home, rebuilding their country. And the brutal yoke of the Taliban lifted in Afghanistan.

Yesterday President Karzai gave us a powerful account of the emerging democracy in his country. One and a half million girls now back at school and two million refugees returned home.

And on Iraq, I know there are strongly held views on both sides. And the debate will continue, especially over weapons of mass destruction.

Today a statement on the Interim Report of the Iraq Survey Group will be published. The media are already carrying what they claim to be leaks from the report. All I have to say to those who doubted our action against Saddam is: wait until the report is published.

And, as Ann Clwyd reminded us so powerfully yesterday, surely, there can be no remaining doubt that the Iraqi people live in a better country today without Saddam Hussein.

Conference, that’s our leader. Providing serious leadership. Facing tough choices. Taking monumental decisions.

But let’s look at the competition. When the voters face a choice let’s look at the alternative leadership on offer.

The Liberals. Charlie Kennedy.

He’s made a momentous decision recently. With lasting implications for his party and the whole nation.

Conference, Charles Kennedy has ended Liberal co-operation with Labour.

I am devastated. I never quite managed to make it to Lib/Lab liaison meetings and now I never will.

Charlie’s leadership: Talking left and acting right, or vice versa, depending on the audience.

Charlie’s economic policy: more government spending all round and no way to fund it.

It’s like Charlie and the Chocolate Factory: as many sweeties as you like and you don’t have to pay for any of them.

And now there’s Charlie’s cunning plan to replace the Tories. His message to his troops: “go back to your constituencies and prepare for opposition” Another 80 years of it. That’s fine by us, isn’t it?

And the Tories. Iain Duncan Smith.

He made a momentous decision too.

He wants to change the face of the Conservative party. Literally.

He’s spent £100,000 on a makeover. I’m not kidding. A personal image consultant. So he can, I quote, “walk, talk, and look the part”.

He’s learning how to shake hands properly. Well, it’s a lot of money and it might well buy him a different handshake. But I tell you, it won’t give him a firmer grip on reality. Or his party. Or his job.

He’s also been taught “new hand gestures” for when he’s speaking. Hand gestures? I’ll give him a hand gesture. And I’ll give him it for free.

It’s old. It’s traditional. And it’s the same gesture the British people will give him – and the rest of his gang – at the next general election.

Now, while I’m on the subject of elections, there’s a few coming up.

Next year we’ll have them for: the European parliament, the London assembly and thousands of local council seats up and down the country.

And, conference, there’ll be an opportunity for people across the north-west, north-east and Yorkshire & Humberside to vote in referendums to establish, for the first time ever, their own directly elected regional assemblies.

At the last two general elections we had pledge cards. Do you remember them?

I toured the constituencies signing them.

I have to tell you I was a bit worried that we wouldn’t achieve all 10 pledges in 10 years. Well did it. Not in 10 years. We did it in six years!

Here’s just 4 of those achievements:

· A stable economy; smaller class sizes; youth unemployment down; shorter hospital waiting lists.

That’s not distorted press perception. It’s crystal clear Labour reality.

Have you ever wondered what a Tory pledge card for the next election would look like? We have.

And we’ve had a stab at producing one ourselves.

Have a look at this. Five Tory pledges.

Privatise the NHS; cuts of 20% to public services; sack thousands of nurses; scrap the child tax credit and the pension credit, slash student numbers.

That’s enough of that. Get rid of it.

They might look down and out at the moment.

But, I tell you, come the next election, the choice will be clear.

And when that election does come around. Never, ever forget that they are the lowest, the meanest and the most dangerous opponents we could have.

Never, ever forget that the Tories are the real enemy.

Never ever forget, either, that Tory legacy. People’s memories have faded.

You can’t blame them for blocking out just how bad it was under the Tories. But we have to remind people about:

· Families struggling on our worst run-down estates; parents on the dole. Children with no hope.; sky-high truancy, overcrowded classrooms; communities consumed by drugs and crime.

But it’s all changing. The shackles of those long Tory years are being prized open. Slowly and surely people are starting to see real improvement.

It was our most deprived estates that suffered Thatcher’s worst blows. So we believe they deserved to be top of the list. To be Labour’s top priority.

A better life for all, yes, but more help for those who need it most.

A baby born in Britain on that same estate today has better life chances than ever.

She might be born in a new maternity hospital, funded by the private finance initiative.

Returning home to a home modernised to a decent standard.

Thanks to Sure Start, she will receive a better start in life, while her mum can study for NVQs with a better chance of finding work.

Huge capital investment has improved her primary and secondary school.

Year on year, with exam results improving, truancy rates dropping and smaller classes, she and her classmates experience the joys of learning.

If she leaves school early she is more likely to be employed than a few years ago.

If she stays on she has a better chance of going into further or higher education.

Her parents are using the working family tax credit and the national minimum wage to help them out of poverty and regain their self-respect.

And her grandparents, from tomorrow, receiving a great boost to their pensions.

That’s Labour. Still caring from cradle to the grave.

Conference, we, in this party, hold power, not by virtue of birth or wealth.

We are all of equal worth.

We belong to the party that civilised the 20th century. And now history has placed in our hands the future of this country as we begin the 21st century.

We hold in trust the memory of past generations whose pain, sacrifice and hard work built this party.

We protect and promote the interests of today’s citizens: young and old, men and women, black and white. Not just those who voted Labour but all the people of this country.

And with us we carry hopes and dreams to pass on to future generations.

If we fail now. If we tear ourselves apart as we’ve in the past,

Then that would truly be a betrayal. A betrayal of all those people who depend on a Labour government to make their lives better.

So, yes, we will debate policy among ourselves.

But let us remember this.

The party in government, the party in the country, Britain as a whole, “we achieve more by our common endeavour than we achieve alone.’

So go out there and speak to the people. Let’s tell them. Tell them what we’ve done

Let’s explain what we’re doing. Let’s engage with them on what we intend to do.

And let’s do that with a sense of purpose, a sense of unity, and a sense of pride.

Proud of all we stand for. Proud of our Labour party.

John Prescott – 2003 Speech on the Thames Gateway

Below is the text of the speech made by the then Deputy Prime Minister, John Prescott, at the launch of a new house building project at the Thames Gateway on 30th July 2003.

Prime Minister, ladies and gentlemen, it’s great to be here at Ingress Abbey.

It is an example to all developers.

Award winning planning.

Award winning design.

Built on a brownfield site.

With social and market housing.

And the restoration of a listed building.

Some might say traditional values in a modern setting.

It is a first step towards a new city here in North Kent.

It is part of the 120,000 homes and 180,000 jobs we are aiming to create here in the Thames Gateway.

New homes will be built alongside the Channel Tunnel Rail Link, which we rescued from collapse in 1998.

The first phase of the Rail Link is now nearing completion – on budget and on time – and today setting a new speed record at almost 200 miles an hour. The tunnel runs right below our feet.

Prime Minister, here at Ingress Abbey we are standing in the middle of the Thames Gateway – at the centre of the biggest brownfield site in Europe.

It is a fantastic opportunity.

An opportunity to boost the economy of the Thames Gateway and to provide the housing and jobs we need.

Michael Heseltine identified the potential for the Thames Gateway more than ten years ago.

Today we are not just talking about growth – we are making it happen.

It was only in February that we launched our Sustainable Communities Plan.

Today – under phase one of our programme – we are announcing plans to spend an additional £450 million over three years to support the development of key sites across the Gateway.

That public funding will lever in three or four times as much in private sector investment. The development of the gateway will be a partnership between the public and the private sector.

Public investment in infrastructure and land preparation will have a massive multiplyer effect.

It will be the private sector that provides the vast majority of new housing in the Gateway.

But we want to move ahead as quickly as we can.

So, today I am allocating an additional £130 million to projects at the London end of the Gateway – that is in Stratford, the Royal Docks, Greenwich, Woolwich and Barking Reach where housing pressures are the most intense.

An additional £100 million will be spent over the next three years here in North Kent, and £91 million in South Essex.

Another £100m will also shortly be allocated for other projects awaiting approval, including setting up new Urban Development Corporations in Thurrock and East London.

Getting the transport infrastructure in place is vital. Alastair Darling announced two weeks ago that he is allocating an additional £600 million for transport projects across the Gateway.

And we will make the most of the £5 billion investment in the Channel Tunnel Rail Link – and the £10 billion upgrade of the West Coast Main Line.

These massive, long term investments will provide us with faster, more efficient access to and from London from Europe and the north of England.

Together they will form a transport corridor which will be the centrepiece of development in the Thames Gateway and other Growth Areas from Ashford to Milton Keynes and Northampton in the Midlands.

When complete in 2007 the CTRL will open the way for domestic services providing additional capacity and faster journey times between Kent and London.

The journey time from Ebbsfleet to London will be cut to only 17 minutes – 17 minutes by train, not hours by the motor car. That makes sense. That’s about public investment for sustainable development.

The Dockland Light Railway will be extended to Woolwich and we will introduce new public transport infrastructure to open up Greenwich, Woolwich and Barking Reach.

We will also ensure that the schools and hospitals are in place and that all areas are protected from flooding. Today, for example, we have announced around £130 million for three new or extended university campuses in the Thames Gateway.

To the north of London, new development will also be well served by the transport investment we are making in:

– the upgrade of the West Coast Main Line,

– new rolling stock for the Midland Main Line,

– the new interchange with Channel Tunnel Rail Link at St Pancras and Kings Cross and

– additional investment in the M1 and M11 motorways.

In the growth areas, I am announcing today plans for and additional £163 million to be spent in:

Ashford, Milton Keynes and the South Midlands, and the London-Stansted-Cambridge corridor.

This investment will help deliver an extra 130,000 homes and 120,000 jobs in the Milton Keynes- South Midlands area alone.

To complete the picture, yesterday we announced a new £89 million Liveability Fund, to invest in our parks, public spaces and streets – improving the very sinews of our communities and the quality of life for everyone.

And although the Thames Gateway is about new build, we also want to continue our record of improving the social housing stock.

Two days ago we provided £1.5 billion to 13 new Arms Length Management Organisations to improve the quality of nearly 200,000 council-owned homes. That is in addition to the 800,000 council homes that have been brought up to a decent standard since 1997.

Finally, I am very pleased that we are joined here today by Richard McCarthy, who will join my department to head up the new Sustainable Communities office in the autumn.

The message today is that we are not just talking about sustainable growth.

We are making it happen.

Today marks the start of a long term commitment coupled with a long term process of delivery.

We are putting new delivery mechanisms in place.

We are putting the investment in place.

And we have the political commitment to make it happen.

Prime Minister, we are delighted that you are here with us today. We are embarking on a huge enterprise with the development of the Thames Gateway and the other growth areas. I know you want that to happen.

It is a huge challenge, but we all know you will be keeping a close eye on it with the Cabinet Committee you chair. And together with our partners in the public and private sector we are determined to deliver.

John Prescott – 1999 Speech to Labour Party Conference

Below is the text of the speech made by the then Deputy Prime Minister, John Prescott, to the 1999 Labour Party Conference.

Two years ago, we inherited a Britain that was socially divided.

Public services were starved of investment.

Our environment was degraded. The air polluted. Water and rivers contaminated.

Local government was shackled. Housing investment slashed.

Rural communities neglected. A massive investment backlog, Disorganised railways, And crumbling roads.

That’s the legacy the Tories left us.

We are committed to reverse that.

On day one, we brought together a new government department whose very purpose is a better quality of life. Improving people’s homes, their neighbourhoods, their travel, the air they breathe, the water they drink.

There is much to do. But we have taken the essential long-term decisions to implement our manifesto Programme, and have a good ministerial team to implement it.

We have a new positive partnership with local government. No longer is local government treated as the enemy within. We value public services. We value public servants. And like them, we want to deliver better public services.

We promised to bring decision making closer to the people. We are giving London back to Londoners. Next May, Londoners will celebrate by ensuring their new mayor is neither Steven Norris nor Jeffrey Archer.

And alongside devolution in Scotland and Wales, We’ve taken a step towards the sort of regional government that I have long believed in, With Regional Development Agencies, new regional planning and accountability.

Two centuries after the world’s first Industrial Revolution, we face a new And momentous challenge – to renew and revitalise our towns and cities for a new age.

As Lord Rogers’ Urban Task Force report makes clear, This calls for nothing less than an urban renaissance.

It’s not just a matter of housing, planning or design.

It’s about jobs, transport, schools, crime and health as well – The whole quality of life in our cities and communities.

We have already started.

£5bn of capital receipts to help imporve2m homes as we promised.

£4bn to regenerate areas in need.

Almost a billion to help lift our poorest neighbourhoods out of the cycle of deprivation. Tackling the causes, not the symptoms.

A £350m package for our coalfield communities, To start to repair the damage caused by Mrs Thatcher’s spiteful attack on our pit communities.

We are offering jobs and hope, instead of despair and dole.

A new style of living – which puts people first – in the concept of the Millennium Village.

Built to the highest environmental standards The highest environmental standards. A social mix of housing. Excellent public transport.

The first two of these are at Greenwich by the Dome and in the mining town of Allerton Bywater.

Reclaiming contaminated industrial land to create a living, thriving, healthy community.

And I can announce today that we will invite proposals for a further five Millennium Villages in other part of Britain.

A new start for Britain.

And in the countryside, we have set up a new Countryside Agency to champion rural needs.

We are safeguarding rural schools and post offices.

And today, I can announce that our Rural Bus Fund is supporting 1,800 additional bus services, linking villages to hospitals, schools, jobs and market towns.

That’s social justice.

Well, let me tell you about the Tory Council of NorthYorkshire.

We gave the Council nearly a billion pounds from the Rural Bus Fund. The Council sent it back.

But local people want the bus services.

No doubt they will contact their local MP the leader of the opposition, Mr Hague.

No wonder the Tories are no longer the party of the countryside!

Under Labour, our air is getting cleaner. Our rivers and beaches are less polluted.

No longer is Britain tagged the ‘dirty man of Europe’.

And what about water supplies?

Every summer a crisis under the Tories.

We have got the privatised water companies to cut the leaks, repair the pipes at their own expense, and cut the water bills from next April.

And we’ve told them no more disconnection’s for families who can’t afford to pay.

That’s social justice. And it takes a Labour government to deliver it.

But the biggest environmental challenge we face is the poisoning of the earth’s atmosphere by the industrialised countries.

People see on TV the ice caps melting. Greater droughts. Fiercer storms. Rising seas, which threaten to wipe out whole coastal communities. They know something is wrong and they want action.

This is a global problem and needs a global solution.

That’s why Britain led the world at the UN Climate Summit in Kyoto, Negotiating legal limits to the greenhouse gases that cause global warming.

To take the lead in international negotiations.

Because, under Tony Blair, Britain is respected once again throughout the world.

And why do we do this?

Because we have an obligation to pass on to our children a better world that the one we inherited.

That’s what we mean by international solidarity – the essence of Labour’s beliefs.

That’s why we brought the environment and transport together, to get a more Integrated approach.

Of course transport is never out of the news.

The M4 bus land trial now means buses and taxis are getting through quicker. Cars are also getting through quicker.

Every week you get another alarmist news headline – seldom checked in case the truth gets in the way of a good story.

Reducing the speed limit from 70 to 50 – not true.

A policy to nick everybody, everywhere, driving over 30 – not true.

Anti-motorist – not true.

How could I be anti car, driving two jags?

It’s a pity we can’t have a more intelligent debate.

That’s why we set up the Integrated Transport Commission.

Anyway, people don’t pigeon-hole themselves just as motorists.

We are parents and pedestrians as well. People who drive cars care about pollution and their children’s future too.

We are not anti-car. We are pro-people.

Even the last Government came to accept that you can’t build your way out of congestion.

When the Tories came in, there were 70 cars per mile of road.

And, after £70bn spent on roods, this increased to 100 cars per mile of roads.

The worst option for the motorist is to carry on as before.

But John Redwood has disowned the last government. With promises of higher speeds, more tarmac, and ripping out road safety measures.

Even the Times newspaper called his plan “cheap populism”.

His solution to traffic jams is to deregulate the roads.

Fewer speed limits, fewer traffic lights – compromising safety.

What we need is a better balance.

In other European countries they own more cars. But they use them less. And they use public transport more.

Above all, we need to widen choice by steadily improving public transport.

For too long, politicians have dodged long term responsibility for short-term expediency.

I intend to do what is right.

Our policies are decided not for tomorrow’s newspapers, but for tomorrow’s children.

Our biggest challenge is to reverse the massive under-investment and damage of the Tory years.

As an ex-seafarer, I am particularly pleased that we are about to double – that’s right double – the size of the British registered fleet, under the Red Ensign.

That’s the kind of revival we are producing.

Under the Tories, privatisation saw rail companies re-painting their trains, instead of replacing them. The biggest beneficiary was Dulux.

Now billions of pounds are being invested in road and rail infrastructure.

Of course an ageing transport system that has been neglected for decades will have breakdowns and delay.

And you can’t put in brand new infrastructure without causing some disruption.

But we should celebrate the fact that public transport is now a growth industry.

We are making the investment for that to happen.

As we promised in the manifesto, As conference agreed last year, The new investment is from public and private sources.

New bus investment up 80%.

100 new rail stations.

1,000 more train services a day.

And we are getting more rail investment in 10 years than in the past 100 years.

New local transport plans will bring better quality and more choice in public transport, with £800m to kick them off.

In London we will hand over a £5bn legacy to the new mayor.

A package which includes the Light Rail crossing the river to Lewisham.

The new Jubilee Line extension, the Croydon Tramlink, and much more.

We are only able to do this because we are mobilising billions of pounds of private finance to serve the public interest.

But big investment can’t be done overnight.

Upgrading the national rail network.

Modernising the London Underground.

Completing the high speed Channel Tunnel Rail Link.

All these take time.

But we have established the new Strategic Rail Authority, To safeguard the public interest and develop the rail network – both passenger and freight.

Together with the new regulator, everyone agrees we now have a watchdog with a bite as well as a bark, acting on behalf of you – the public.

And I have today issued new instructions to the SRA to start the renegotiating rail franchises, to establish a new modern railway for a new century.

Last year I said the railways were a national disgrace.

Well, the industry has made some efforts.

The first signs of improvement are starting to show.

But I say to the rail companies: “You are on probation”.

By the next Spring Rail Summit, we will judge how far you have advanced.

Public private partnership is also the key to securing investment in the London Underground and Air Traffic Control.

That’s why we proposed in our Manifesto a £7bn public -private partnership to modernise the underground. A service which will be publicly owned and publicly run.

Where employees will have their employment conditions, pensions and free travel guaranteed.

We are mortgaging the Tube assets, just like you do with a house. And the assets will come back to the public sector, when they have been upgraded.

So it will be completely publicly owned once again.

I understand the concern about proposed changes in Air Traffic Control.

And of course we will continue to consult all the interested parties, including the unions.

But air traffic is growing fast. NATS want to use its expertise abroad to share in the growth of the aviation industry.

It needs over a billion pounds to keep up with growing air movements.

NATS has never been able to plan ahead to invest with certainty under past government financing.

NATS is an equity-based company already.

What is proposed is for government to keep a 49% stake, with 5% for staff – leaving 46% for the private sector.

We could ask the Chancellor to shell out the billions of pounds from public funds.

But that would mean less cash for hospitals and schools.

Some local authorities have swapped their paper shares in municipal airports to build new schools.

What’s wrong with that?

My own city of Hull has sold some of its shares in its telephone business to improve council services.

What is wrong with that?

So why shouldn’t we raise money from bricks and mortar to provide kidney machines and school computers?

Or – yes, in some cases – other forms of public transport that need investment funds.

This is a question of priorities.

As Nye Bevan said: ‘The language of priorities is the religion of socialism’

Our priority is not rigid dogma, but giving the people of this country the best possible public services

And using our public assets to the best possible advantage.

And let’s be clear about this. Whether it’s air traffic or anywhere else I will never agree to anything that would put safety at risk.

We will keep strict safety regulation entirely in state hands.

A government golden share.

A government director on board.

And a veto built in through the licence to protect the national interest.

Not a triple lock, but a quadruple lock.

The airlines are satisfied with that.

The RAF is happy with that.

And I think this Conference should trust this government would never put air passengers lives at risk.

I do not take exception to suggestions that I might be soft on safety.

All my life I have campaigned for transport safety.

From Lockerbie to Clapham Junction, I hounded the Tories.

In office, I have demanded train safety protection to stop trains going through red lights.

I have reopened the files on the sinking of the Gaul and the Derbyshire.

And last month I announced a public inquiry. So that the full story can be told of the Marchioness disaster.

So don’t let anyone doubt my commitment to safety.

I will never, repeat never, play games with people’s safety.

And I deplore those who seek to stir up safety for ideological or industrial ends.

Social justice. Labour is the party for the many, not the few.

But sometimes social justice demands that the many must help the few.

That’s why we have outlawed all forms of asbestos

– Britain’s biggest industrial killer

– That’s social justice

That’s why – as we enter the new Millennium We will guarantee every person currently living rough on the streets a bed to sleep in, with a roof over their head.

That’s social justice.

That’s why today Stephen Byers and I are announcing a new scheme to help pensioners and poor families who need help to make their homes warmer

And not just insulation, But brand new central heating.

To reduce the obscenity of deaths from hypothermia – that bring disgrace to this country.

That’s social justice.

It was that great post War Labour government which gave Britain its first National Parks, the jewels of the Countryside.

I remember as a boy the wonder I felt on my first visit youth hostelling to the Lake District.

Its beauty remained eternally with me.

50 years on, this Labour government will begin the process to create new National Parks – in the south downs and the New Forest.

Two new national parks for the new millennium.

A hundreth birthday present from Labour to the nation.

And we will introduce legislation to extend the right to roam and enjoy open countryside.

Because we believe our natural heritage is for the many, Not just the privileged few.

John Prescott – 1996 Speech to Labour Party Conference

Below is the text of the speech made by John Prescott to the 1996 Labour Party Conference.

Well, what a week it’s been! The people are coming home to Labour. Labour coming home to government.

We’ve been away too long. And millions of people have paid the price for it. We’ve adopted the football song Coming Home. I hear that next week John Major is planning to revive his own 1966 football anthem.

But John, honestly, you can’t make the same impact with World Cup Willie.

But what a great conference we’ve had! Labour’s coming home, And coming together.

Bringing together all the strands in the party – old and new. Bringing together the politics of ideas and the politics of organisation. I told you it would work.

This week we’ve faced tough choices. Spoken the language of priorities. No more the party of Opposition but a government in waiting.

Counting the days and the weeks till we get rid of this Tory government.

Because this week will go down in history as the week when Labour – a party reborn, proud of its heritage, confident of its future, clearly proved it is ready for Government.

This week we have seen the team which will form the next Labour government. Led by Tony Blair, our great and sagacious leader. As I always call him.

Compare him with the Galloping Major running scared of Labour, running scared of his own MPs, running scared of an election. And most of all John Major is running scared of Tony Blair.

Because here is a man who leads from the front.

I’ll tell you what. It may be a bumpy ride at times, I know that well enough.

But Tony is a man who knows where he’s going. Who has a clear vision of where the country should be going too. Who strikes a chord with the British people. A man who deserves to be the next Prime Minister of this country.

You know, this week you can really feel the anticipation in the air. You can feel it running through conference.

What a contrast with next week when the Tories turn up in Bournemouth. I can’t wait, can you? The Tories are divided, desperate and dangerous. And they are up to their necks in sleaze.

What a miserable lot they are too, aren’t they? The only Tory worth backing to win at the moment is Frankie Dettori.

Just take a look at the gang in charge. John Major. He used to be a banker, you know. He must have worked for the No-one’s Listening Bank. No one listens to him in his own cabinet. No one listens to him in Europe. No one listens to him in Parliament.

But there’s more bad news for John Major. They’re closing his favourite eating-place. The Happy Eater. He’s so depressed. The Happy Eater was the only place he could get anyone to take his orders.

Then there’s Michael Heseltine, the man who advises firms to delay on paying their debts. They say as a politician he owes a lot to Churchill, but Winston’s still waiting for the payment.

He says the economy is bouncing back. But why are so many cheques doing the same?

Then there’s the Home Secretary Michael Howard, The man responsible for the rule of law. He’s up before the judges so often, he asks for his previous offences to be taken into consideration.

And finally there’s Major’s side-kick, Doctor Mawhinney, The Colonel Sanders of the Tory Party. Leading the chicken run.

There’s something you should know about Brian Mawhinney, in case you bump into him. He always get very ratty if you don’t call him Doctor. This began to puzzle me, since he’s the only doctor I’ve ever met who makes everyone feel sick.

I phoned the British Medical Association. They said they’d never heard of him. I began to think he isn’t a chicken at all. He’s a quack.

But then I thought, maybe he’s a spin doctor. But I checked with Peter Mandelson and he said: No he isn’t in the Union …Sorry, Association.

And then I thought, anyone who can turn a £17 million deficit into a £24 million surplus must be a Witch Doctor.

Or maybe he’s Doctor Doolittle. Talking to the animals with their snouts in the trough.

We’ve got to get to the bottom of this. The publics got to be protected.

But I tell you one thing. After the election, he’s going to be …. Doctor Who?

The best slogan he could think up for their conference next week is Life’s better under the Tories. Sounds to me like one of Steven Norris’s chat up lines.

Can you believe that this lot is in charge? Not for long, eh?

Then after 17 years of this Tory government, they have the audacity to talk about morality.

Did you hear John Major on the Today programme? – calling for ethics to come back into the political debate?

I’m told some Tory MPs think ethics is a county near Middlesex. It’s a bit hard to take: John Major – ethics man.

The Tories have redefined unemployment they have redefined poverty. Now they want to redefine morality.

For too many Tories, morality means not getting caught.

John Major’s argument is that cutting public spending and reducing tax is a moral issue.

And what a perverted definition of morality! It’s all about money in the pocket, isn’t it?

And we’ve heard an awful lot about money in the pockets of Tory MPs lately, haven’t we? I heard two Tory MPs talking last week about cash for questions. One said: What should we do about the Sleaze Bill? The other said: Get someone else to pay it.

Neil Hamilton, that Guardian of Tory morals, told the Deputy Prime Minister he had no financial relationship with a lobbying company. But now we hear he did take payments after all.

But will he resign? No. Tories never know when to say sorry. And if John Major is serious about morality, He should let Nolan look into party funding.

On Wednesday I called on John Major to join Labour to clean up British politics. Yesterday he said he’ll give evidence. Well I’m afraid that’s just not enough.

If Neil Hamilton has a shred of honour left in him, he should go and go now.

But John Major can’t afford to lose him, can he? Why? Because this man is his parliamentary majority of one. He is John Major’s immoral majority. And the silent majority have had enough of them.

Because let’s be clear, Morality is measured in more than just money. Its about right and wrong. its about values. its about fairness and it’s about social justice.

I’d like to ask John Major this: what morality is there ……. In one man making £34 million out of rail privatisation, when so many of our people live in poverty?

Where’s the morality in people being bussed from one hospital to another begging to be admitted?

Where’s the morality In record crime? In record unemployment? Record bankruptcies? Record poverty?

All the product of deliberate government policy. That’s what I call immoral.

And where’s the morality in 16 year old kids forced to sleep rough on the streets?

Do you know it’s 30 years since the film Cathy Come Home shocked this nation about the plight of the homeless?

And after 17 years of Tory government, there are thousands more like Cathy -record numbers of homeless people.

But don’t believe the Tory lie that nothing can be done. It’s time the nation was shocked again.

Because – what’s really immoral is this…. There’s £5 billion from council house sales locked up by the Tory government. There’s a quarter of a million building workers trapped in unemployment.

But the Tories refuse to bring them together. Labour will bring together the money, the people, the skills to meet the social need of our people.

Labour’s coming home. And when we are in government, Cathy can come home too.

That’s the moral difference between us and the Tories. There is an alternative. New Life for Britain our philosophy our priorities our programme for government.

It’s a radical document, It will make a real difference to the lives of ordinary people.

And we are not just asking you to sign up to it for the next few months. It’s for the first five years of a Labour government.

This programme shows we are a party with a heart. We will enthuse our supporters and convince the voters.

We are a party of principle. We will earn the trust of the British people.

We are a party with vision. We will give the inspiration people have been looking for. An age of achievement. A decent society.

And we are a party with compassion – who are prepared to stand up for the rights of the poor, the sick, the unemployed and yes pensioners.

And when we talk about our pensioners. Remember it was Labour who brought in the decent state pension.

It was Labour who brought in SERPS – the Earnings Related Pension.

It was Labour who enabled occupational pensions to flourish.

The Tories have never done anything for pensioners.

The only raise they gave them was to put VAT on fuel.

Our commitment shows it. Our history proves it. A Labour government will not forget our pensioners.

We are a Party of ambition and aspiration.

It was Ernest Bevin who warned us against the poverty of ambition. Taking second best for granted.

We want to unlock the potential of our people. To allow people to live their lives to the full to achieve just a few of their dreams.

I was an 11 Plus failure. But I was given a second chance. By my trade union as a matter of fact. When they sent me to Ruskin College.

It opened my eyes. It excited my mind.

Tories will say ‘That shows the system’s working.’ But I was one of the lucky ones. And I know there are millions of people who have been written off.

Who never got a first chance, a second chance or a third chance. And it’s our job to make sure they get a chance in the future.

That’s why Tony Blair was right when he said educate educate educate, to unlock the potential in our people.

Yesterday this conference overwhelmingly endorsed New Life for Britain.

Now for the first time we are asking every one of our members and millions of trade union members to pledge their support.

This will be the one of the greatest exercises in party democracy in history. Never before has a party set out its programme so far in advance of an election. This is not a three week manifesto. It’s for members to vote on, to pledge their support and to campaign on from now until election day. And for a Labour government to implement after the election.

But it’s only as good as you present it, So read it, understand it, campaign with it take the message to the people in your community.

The ballot papers are going out, at this very moment, to millions of homes.1,500 coordinators are ready, in the constituencies.To organise to conduct this ballot; to ensure everyone is involved. Phil Wilson is here with some of those volunteers. Stand up Phil, so we can see you.

Look in your post tomorrow. And when your ballot paper arrives vote Yes for a New Life for Britain. And if you need an extra incentive, just turn on the telly next week, tune in to the Tory party conference.

When they won’t talk about their record, when they refuse to do anything about the crucial issues.

Don’t just get angry, do something positive.

Get the ballot paper off the mantelpiece. Put a cross in the box. And Vote yes for a new life for Britain.

But to all of you who are watching out there on your TV sets, There’s more than that to do.

There’s no more standing on the sidelines now. The time to hesitate is over.

Now is the time to get involved. Come and join us in the Labour party. Join our campaign.

So I ask all party members to vote, to organise, and help us in our campaign.

Because when the vote is over, when you have pledged your support and endorsed our programme, the job is not finished.

We have to put the case to the people of Britain.

In New Life for Britain we have many proposals. But we highlight those five key pledges. Set out on this card.

This card is a campaigning tool to help you take the message to the electorate.

Straightforward pledges which capture our basic principles.

Smaller classes

tough on crime

shorter waiting lists

more jobs for the young

a strong economy.

Let’s take the issue of jobs first of all. To spell out what we mean in that commitment.

To get 250,000 under 25s out of benefit and into work. But it goes deeper than that.

This pledge is symbolic of our ambition to provide job opportunities for all. Because we believe government can make a difference. And it has a responsibility to seek a high and stable level of employment.

That’s why we are different from the Tories. And it will be paid for by a windfall levy on the profits of the privatised utilities.

Yesterday I was sent this pledge card from Northumbrian Water Actually it says: New Northumbrian Water.

It contains five pledges. But I’ll add a sixth.

Pay the new windfall levy and put our kids back into new jobs . That’s what I call jobs and social justice.

In Education, our pledge is to reduce class sizes for 5 6 and 7 year olds to 30 or less. But we are saying more than that. This pledge symbolises our strong commitment to comprehensive education. Which gives everyone a chance, not just a few.

And there will be no return to the 11 plus.

We want a good state education system for the many not just the few. And we will pay for it out of the Assisted Places Scheme which subsidises private schools. And take unemployed teachers off the dole to teach our children. That’s jobs and social justice.

In our card, we pledge to cut NHS waiting lists by treating an extra 100,000 patients, Because we believe in the principle – the socialist principle – of a health service, based on need, not the ability to pay. Giving greater priority to the needs of the patient, not the needs of the market.

And we will pay for it from the money saved from the huge bureaucratic waste of the internal market.

That’s jobs and social justice.

Together with a strong economy and action on crime, these are among the building blocks of a decent society.

Bringing together our traditional values and putting them into practice in modern ways in a modern setting. That’s what we are about.

We are proud of our history. And we are determined about our future.

There are at most 200 days to the general election. The countdown starts now.

Victory will not come easily.

It will mean knocking on doors, canvassing, hitting the phone buttons, good organization.

And we can’t rely just on our sound bites and the media message alone.

Yes they’re important.

But we can’t do without the people who do the work – activists they are called.

Ordinary people talking to ordinary people.

You can make the difference between winning and losing.

The general election campaign starts right here, right now…

We have the best professional organisation.

The best programme for government.

The best and most popular leader.

Now we must deliver.

The minute conference ends, Tony and I will be leaving here to visit key seats on our way home.

Even though Tony and I are carrying on working, you can have the rest of the day off.

But I want you out working tomorrow. And if you can’t visit a key seat this weekend, I want a promise you’ll visit one soon.

Because the key seats are the battleground for the next election.

So during these next 200 days ask yourself each day Did I do enough today?

Could I have done more to secure a Labour victory? Let that question stay in your mind right up to the general election. Think about what you can do to play your full part. Ask yourself: Did I do enough today?

Think of that day on the 10 April 1992. When we faced another five years of Tory government…… And said: If only……, If only…..

I will never forget that day burned into my memory Neil Kinnock speaking on the steps of Walworth Road, conceding defeat, With great dignity and emotion. He echoed our frustration, disappointment and despair.

Never, never, never again.

That image will only be extinguished when we see Tony Blair on the steps of 10 Downing Street, Announcing a magnificent Labour victory in the next general election.

And we will never forget the people who led us through the hard times to the threshold of government today. John Smith, Neil Kinnock, and yes Michael Foot.

Victory is within our grasp after seventeen long years.

A chance to serve – that’s all we ask. And with your help, and the people’s trust, we can win.

That will give new hope to pensioners, new hope to young people, new hope for the low paid and families, new hope for industry.

New hope for the whole of the British people.

We’ve had enough lies.

Enough sleaze. Enough excuses. Enough poverty. Enough unemployment. Enough failure. Enough is enough.

We are united and ready to govern.

This was the week when old and new came together.

A Labour Party united.

A country united

A new Labour government.

New hope for Britain.