Labor leader’s praise for former Waveney MP Bob Blizzard

10:49 am May 11, 2022

Sir Keir Starmer has hailed former Waveney MP Bob Blizzard after his death last week.

The Labor leader paid tribute to the 71-year-old, who remains the only non-Conservative candidate to hold the Waveney seat since it was established in 1983.

Mr Blizzard’s win was one of many wins for Tony Blair’s government in his historic landslide victory in 1997, and he retained the seat until losing by just 769 votes to Peter Aldous in 2010.

Former Waveney MP Bob Blizzard in Beccles.
– Credit: Nick Butcher

Sir Keir said: “It’s incredibly sad to hear of Bob Blizzard’s death.

“His committed service to the people of Waveney has made him an inspiration to so many Labor Party members across Suffolk.

“He brought his joie de vivre to everything he did.

“My thoughts are with his family and friends.”

In parliament, Mr Blizzard was appointed Deputy Treasury Whip in 2007, before being promoted to Lord Commissioner of the Treasury after a cabinet reshuffle the following year.

Prior to his time at Westminster, Mr Blizzard served as Leader of Waveney District Council for six years, having been elected to the authority in 1987.

Former District Councilor Brian Hunter said: “Having known Bob throughout his public service as Waveney District Councilor and Leader of Council, I had the privilege of being his Labor election agent when he was elected Labor MP for Waveney.

“His leadership in this role has been acclaimed by everyone he came in contact with.

“He represented not only the district of Waveney, but also many people taking charge of their issues and anxieties.

“A passionate supporter of the Third River Crossing, the success we have today is due in large part to Bob’s perseverance and persistence in promoting the case for eventual acceptance.

“His stated mandate for the Waveney constituency was ‘You know Bob and Bob knows Waveney’ – a commitment Bob fulfilled whoever he came into contact with or whatever he was called upon to promote or represent.

“Bob was so proud to have the responsibility of an MP, just as I’m sure so many local people were proud to have known him.”

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