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Westminster office vacancy

Job Title: Parliamentary Assistant

Working For: Tom Blenkinsop MP (Middlesbrough South & East Cleveland)

Location: London

Salary: £23,000 PA for 30 hour week

Job Details:

Tom Blenkinsop MP is seeking to appoint a Parliamentary Assistant to support his role as the MP for Middlesbrough South & East Cleveland, as a member of several Parliamentary Committees, and as an officer of All-Party Parliamentary Groups (APPGs).

The role is for 30 hours a week (Mon-Thurs), based in Tom’s House of Commons office, and will primarily be focused on his key areas of interest in Parliament.

The position requires flexibility from the post-holder as the demands of the role are determined in part by the Member’s workload and the Parliamentary timetable.

Job Description

  • Analyse, evaluate and interpret data to ensure Member is accurately informed on key issues
  • Develop and maintain current knowledge of bills, Early Day Motions, legislation, Hansard, debates etc
  • Diary Management
  • Ensure the Member is fully briefed on potential questions and motions to be put to the house
  • Give advice on policy issues
  • Monitor media coverage and brief the Member on relevant issues
  • Prepare and present briefing notes for committees, press releases, parliamentary questions etc
  • Progress policy based casework
  • Project management
  • Provide generalist admin support
  • Respond to routine correspondence and enquiries
  • Undertake research, usually from readily available sources on straightforward subjects
  • Communicate effectively with both internal and external contacts
  • Liaise closely with colleagues in the constituency office to support Tom’s work

Person Specification

  • Educated to degree level
  • A keen interest in politics and current affairs
  • Ability to work proactively and independently, as well as part of a small team
  • Excellent research, analytical and communication skills, with keen attention to detail
  • Strong organisational skills, with the ability to work quickly and flexibly, prioritising and completing tasks in a timely fashion
  • Ability to remain discreet and maintain confidentiality at all times
  • Excellent IT and database skills, knowledge of standard office practices
  • Sympathetic to the aims and values of the Labour Party
  • Previous experience of working in Parliament would be beneficial

Upon appointment you will be required to comply with the Baseline Personnel Security Standard, undertaken by the Members’ Staff Verification Office (MSVO). See Members’ Staff Verification Office (MSVO) page for further info. MPs generally pay staff in accordance with IPSA guidelines.

Closing Date: 6 May 2016

Interview/Start Dates:

Interviews will take place in Westminster on 12th and 19th May, with the successful candidate starting as soon as possible after 31st May.

Application Details:

To apply for this post, please email a one page covering letter and your full CV with referees to with PARLIAMENTARY ASSISTANT – YOUR NAME in the subject line.


Fears Over the Future of Popular Guisborough Allotments

Labour MP for Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland has called on the Conservative Chair of Guisborough Parish Council to quash the developing rumours that he has had talks with Lord Gisborough regarding plans to sell of the town’s Wilton Lane allotments.

It is believed that Malcolm Griffiths, the Conservative Parish Council Chair, has had discussions with Lord Gisborough’s estate regarding the possible sale of the Wilton Lane allotments and surrounding area to a housing developer.

Tom said: “part of the land where the allotments are was purchased on behalf ‘of the denizens’ Guisborough after World War Two and some have been managed by the same families for over 100 years.


“I have written to Guisborough Parish Council and Malcolm Griffiths to seek assurances that the town’s allotments will not be lost now, or in the future. I will be working with Guisborough Borough Councillor Shelagh Holyoake and Labour Town councillors to make sure that the allotments are saved for future generations.

Labour Candidate for the Hutton ward by-election Ian Taylor added: “The residents of Guisborough have a right to know what the Chair of their Parish Council has discussed with local land owners, especially if it was about the future of the town.”

A petition calling for the Parish Chair to make a statement regarding the future of the allotment is available to sign at

Merry Christmas

I would like to take this opportunity to wish each and everyone of you a very Merry Christmas and the very best of wishes for the year ahead.

My office will open at the following times over the Christmas and New Year period to give you any help you may need:

Thursday 24th Dec (Christmas Eve) – 9am – Noon
Friday 25th Dec (Christmas Day) – Closed
Monday 28th Dec (Bank Holiday) – Closed
Tuesday 29th Dec – 10am – 2pm
Wednesday 30th Dec – 10am – 2pm
Thursday 31st Dec – 9am – Noon
Friday 1st Jan (New Year’s Day) – Closed

Usual office hours will resume from Monday 4th Jan.

Do not hesitate to get in touch should you need to on 01287 610878, or write to Harry Tout House, 8 Wilson Street, Guisborough, TS14 6NA or you can email me on

Tom welcomes start of work to repair Gaskell Bridge

Tom Blenkinsop, Labour MP for Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland, today (9th November 2015) welcomed the news that work on repairing Gaskell Bridge in Loftus is due to start this week.

The bridge was damaged following severe flooding in September 2013 and has been the subject of a long legal dispute over ownership.

Following the local elections, in August this year the Labour-led council adopted responsibility for the bridge, much to the relief of local residents.

Tom said: “Getting to this stage has been a very difficult process and I was pleased when the Labour controlled council took on this responsibility. I am obviously overjoyed that work to carry out the repairs will get underway later this week.

“The residents have had to wait a long time for these repairs so I have my fingers crossed that we have reasonably decent weather as to not hamper the workers who will be carrying them out. Nobody is under any illusion that the repairs will be easy and they will take some time, but I think we now have an end in sight for this saga and everyone can be pleased.”

Tom welcomes the news of rejection of plans to close Luke Senior Hall in Loftus

Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland Labour MP, Tom Blenkinsop, today (5th November 2015) welcomed the “great news” that Redcar and Cleveland Council’s regulatory Committee had unanimously rejected a planning application by Coast and Country Housing that would have seen the loss of a much loved community hall in Loftus through conversion to a dwelling house. The hall, the Luke Senior Community Centre on Rosedale Crescent has been operating since the 1950’s.

Tom, who had also objected to the plans, said “I thank local Loftus Labour Councillor, Eric Jackson, for formally moving the rejection of Coast and Country’s plan and all the members of the Committee for supporting him. It was clear that Coast and Country Housing had not thought this proposal through properly, had not consulted the local public and just simply did not grasp the public anger over this move.”

“The building is a valuable resource housing community activities, acting as a “hub” for the neighbouring Mars Estate and being a well used polling station. I would hope the unanimous rejection and the attendance of many local residents at the Committee hearing will dissuade Coast and Country from appealing this decision, and that they will now, instead, work with the local community to protect and build up the usage of this valuable community facility”

Too Little Too Late on Steel State Aid

Commenting on news that the government plans to make state aid approval to provide relief to Energy Intensive Industries from the cost of renewables policy by the end of this year. Tom Blenkinsop, Labour Member of Parliament for Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland and chair of All Party Parliamentary Group on Steel said:

“This is too little too late from a government trying to play catch up, one sixth of the steel worker in the country have already lost their jobs and more could be under threat by the end of the year.

“Labour MP’s have made it very clear to Anna Soubry, the BIS Minister, that this is too slow and any state aid needs to happen in the next few weeks to minimise the risk to the future of the steel industry in the UK.

“I will raise this with Sajid Javid in a meeting later today (29th October), urging him and the government to act quickly, it is too late to save job losses in Redcar and only a fast acting government can save ever more steelworkers from facing redundancy.”


Tom supports Loftus residents in their fight to save Luke Senior Hall

Commenting on Coast and Country Housing’s planning application to convert the long standing Luke Senior Community Centre in Rosedale Crescent, Loftus, into housing, Tom Blenkinsop, Labour Member of Parliament for Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland, Said:


“Loftus residents have my support in opposing this application. The hall is a well-used facility for older people in the West of Loftus and in the heart of the housing estate. There are no nearby similar facility, meaning that some user groups will either have to find alternative venues or fold.


“Luke Senior Hall is a life line for older people and is an integral part of their community as well as a well-used polling station for elections. Darts, tombola, coffee mornings are all part of the daily life of this hall.


“If the application is successful Coast and Country will have closed community halls in the neighbouring villages of Loftus and Easington in five years, damaging both communities. Luke Senior Hall is too precious to lose and I have asked Coast and Country withdraw their application until a proper consultation can take place and residents’ concerns can be taken into account.”

One million people set to lose their vote

IER graphicTom Blenkinsop MP, responding to the news that changes in the electoral registration system mean around one million people will lose their votes, said:  

“The Tories have rushed through changes to the electoral registration system, and now around one million people are set to lose their votes.  

“We will soon we have a big choice to make about whether Britain stays in the EU, but if people are not on the electoral register, they will not be able to vote and have their say.  

“If you’re not registered to vote you can even face an £80 fine and find it harder to get a credit Card or a mobile phone contract.  

“It is important that everyone registers to vote. It’s quick and easy – you can register in just three minutes by going to”


Tom’s comments on the Closure of the Redcar Steelworks

Commenting on the news that the former SSI Steelworks in Redcar will undergo a ‘Hard Closure’ Tom Blenkinsop, Labour MP for Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland and Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Steel said: 

“This is devastating news for the 2,200 workers who have lost their jobs, my thoughts go out to those who have lost their jobs and their families. This is a dark day for Teesside and East Cleveland, the repercussions will be felt through the supply chain and the local economy. 

“The government have sat on their hands while thousands of people have lost their jobs, there was a viable offer on the table to maintain the coke ovens but the government failed to listen, they just went through the motions. The Government have abandoned Teesside. 

“To add further insult to injury, the increased number of redundancies will decrease the already meagre steel aid package, as redundancy payments are included in the £80 million figure. The government must reconsider the £80 million package as thousands more people could lose their jobs with contractors and suppliers.”


Tom Blenkinsop MP calls for SSI UK to ‘get out of the way’ in the fight to save steelmaking on Teesside

Commenting on after a meeting of the Steel Action Group Tom Blenkinsop, Labour MP for Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland and the Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Steel, has called on SSI UK to step aside to hasten the efforts to protect the Redcar blast furnace.

 Tom Said: “I doubt that SSI UK will exist by the end of the week, they have massive debts and are unable to pay energy and resource suppliers.

 “I’m calling on SSI UK, and their banking creditors, to get out of the way and allow the transfer of all the on-site assets, including the blast furnace and coke ovens, so they can be successfully mothballed and allow the site to be secured so that we have a fighting chance for steelmaking to return to Redcar in the future.

 “I am hopeful that Anna Soubry, the Steel Minister, can persuade the government to fast track the administration of SSI UK and work with the local workforce, trade unions and businesses to ensure that we have the capability to restart steelmaking in Redcar if an appropriate buyer is found.

 “The government must also act quickly to make sure there is a much needed retention package for the area to allow the workforce, and subcontractors, to receive the money they are owed and minimise the damaging economic impact which will affect the area.

 “This plan may still not work-and we have to be honest that time and SSI’s deliberate silence has not helped at all. But even so this is our best chance to retain our Teesside steel making assets.”