Leeds MPs

BURGON, Colin (born 1948) Labour. Teacher.

He commenced his teaching career at Foxood High School and was active in the NUT. During and after the 1984–1985 miners’ strike he supported the miners in Elmet and was made an honorary member of the NUM. After being a local government policy and research officer for Wakefield District Council and research officer fo the GMB Union, he unsuccessfully contested Elmet in both 1987 and 1992. In the Labour landslide of 1997, he unseated the sitting Conservative, Spencer Batiste, by a massive 8,779 majority. He was further successful in the 2001 and the 2005 elections. He indicated in his maiden speech he did not envisage a ministerial career. However, in 2000 he did become a member of the Northen Ireland Select Committee and in 2005 the Home Affairs Select Committee. He was generally interested in the development of socialism in South America, particularly in Venezuela. A left-winger, he was critical of many of the policies of New Labour. He decided to stand down in 2010. For further reading see Yorkshire Evening Post, 26 February 2010; http://www.news.bbc.co.uk.