Steve Reed (politician)

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Steve Reed
Member of Parliament
for Croydon North
Assumed office
29 November 2012
Preceded by Malcolm Wicks
Majority 11,753 (47.9%)
Personal details
Born (1963-11-12) 12 November 1963 (age 51)
Nationality British
Political party Labour Party/Co-op
Alma mater University of Sheffield

Steven Mark Ward Reed OBE (born 12 November 1963) is a British Labour and Co-operative Party politician who has been the Member of Parliament (MP) for Croydon North since 2012. He was previously the Leader of Lambeth Council from 2006 to 2012.[1][2]

Early life[edit]

Reed grew up in St Albans, Hertfordshire, and his family worked at Odhams printing factory in Watford until it closed down in 1983.[3] Around this time, he joined the Labour Party before going on to study English at Sheffield University.[3] He worked in the educational publishing industry from 1990 to 2008.[3]

In March 2008 he narrowly lost out to Chuka Umunna for selection as Labour's 2010 election candidate for the Streatham constituency.

Lambeth Council[edit]

Reed first stood for the 1998 Lambeth London Borough Council election and won the Town Hall ward (now Brixton Hill). In 2002 Labour lost control of Lambeth council to a Conservative/Liberal Democrat coalition, and in response Reed was elected leader of the opposition.

After Labour won back control of Lambeth Council in 2006, Reed was appointed the council's leader. During his tenure, Lambeth went from being rated London's worst-run borough, with a one-star rating in the Audit Commission's annual inspection in 2006, to having a three-star rating in 2009.[4][5] At the 2010 election, Labour gained seats from the Liberal Democrats and Conservatives, making it the first time that Labour had been re-elected to lead in Lambeth for twenty years.

Reed held a number of significant positions in local government. He was:

  • Deputy Leader of Local Government Labour, an association representing Labour councillors nationally;[6]
  • Deputy Chairman of the Local Government Association;[7]
  • London Councils Board Member for Children’s Services and Employment;[8]
  • Chairman of Central London Forward, a lobbying group representing five inner-London boroughs;[9]
  • A board member representing London’s boroughs on the London Enterprise Partnership;[10]
  • Co-Chair of the Vauxhall-Nine Elms-Battersea regeneration board;[11]
  • Chairman of the London Young People’s Education and Skills Board;[12]
  • Served as a member of the London Board of the Homes and Communities Agency between 2009-11.[13]

In May 2010, Reed launched a consultation on plans to turn Lambeth into the country’s first co-operative council[14][15] intending to deliver better services more cost-effectively by giving more control to communities and service users, reported in The Guardian newspaper as a possible new model for Labour in local government.[16] The final report of Lambeth Council’s Cooperative Council Commission[17] laid out the plans for achieving this objective and Lambeth Council is now putting a transformation plan into effect.

Reed was reported to the Standards Board by a Conservative councillor after he disclosed that she was barred from voting on financial matters because of her refusal to pay council tax on one of her properties for several years.[18] This information was legally disclosable and no sanction was imposed. [19]

Reed was named one of the three most influential council leaders in the country by the Local Government Chronicle in 2011[20] and was the highest-ranked Labour politician in the 2010 Pink List compiled by The Independent on Sunday.[21]

Reed was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the 2013 Birthday Honours for services to local government.[22]

Member of Parliament[edit]

On 3 November 2012, Reed narrowly defeated former Croydon Council leader Val Shawcross by only three votes,[23] to become the Labour candidate for the historically safe Labour seat of Croydon North, following a selection meeting of the local Croydon North Constituency Labour Party.[24] The by-election followed on from the death of the former MP for Croydon North Malcolm Wicks and was won by Reed on 29 November 2012.

In October 2013 Reed was appointed a Shadow Home Office Minister by Labour Leader Ed Miliband.[25]

Personal life[edit]

Reed lives with his partner in Croydon. His interests include cooking, camping and cycling. He has two cats.


  1. ^[dead link]
  2. ^
  3. ^ a b c
  4. ^ Lambeth is London's worst-run borough, by Ross Lydall, Evening Standard, 22 February 2007
  5. ^ CPA
  6. ^ Local Government Association
  7. ^ Local Government Association:
  8. ^ London Councils:
  9. ^ Central London Forward
  10. ^ London Enterprise Partnership:
  11. ^ Who runs London
  12. ^ London Councils Young People’s Education and Skills Board:
  13. ^ Homes and Communities Agency
  14. ^ "Lambeth Council plans to be a cooperative". BBC News. 18 February 2010. Retrieved 28 May 2010. 
  15. ^ O'Hara, Mary (30 July 2008). "Council moves to tackle violent crime". The Guardian (London). Retrieved 28 May 2010. 
  16. ^ Stratton, Allegra (17 February 2010). "John Lewis Council". The Guardian (London). Retrieved 28 May 2010. 
  17. ^ Lambeth Council Cooperative Council Commission report:
  18. ^  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  19. ^ [1]
  20. ^ Local Government Chronicle ‘LGC 50’ 2011:
  21. ^ "The IoS Pink List 2010". The Independent (London). 1 August 2010. 
  22. ^ The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 60534. p. 12. 15 June 2013.
  23. ^
  24. ^ Croydon Advertiser (London). 3 November 2012 |url= missing title (help). 
  25. ^ Source: Labour List blog, 8 October 2013

External links[edit]