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Keir Starmer speech - live: Labour leader shakes off glitter ambush and unveils ‘mission for government’

Heckler storms stage shouting ‘we are in crisis’ before being dragged off by security

Starmer speech

Keir Starmer vowed to oversee a “decade of renewal” if Labour wins the next election after his conference speech got off to a shaky start when a protester stormed on stage and covered him in glitter.

The Labour leader set out his mission for government, promising to build 1.5 million homes in what he described as a “new generation of towns”.

Shocking footage captured the moment the heckler evades security and dumps glitter over the Labour leader while wrapping his arms around him and shouting “we are in crisis” before finally being bundled to the ground.

The heckler was heard shouting: “We demand a people’s house, we are in crisis – politics needs an update. We are in crisis”. Footage emerged online afterwards of the protester being dragged from the building by police.

Removing his jacket and rolling up his sleeves, Starmer was applauded for keeping his cool and regaining control of the podium. He told the audience: “If he thinks that bothers me he doesn’t know me. Protest not power, that is why we changed our party conference.”

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Starmer: Labour must be prepared for fight against ‘dangerous Tories'

Labour must be prepared for a fight against “dangerous” Tories, Sir Keir Starmer warned.

He said: “As for the Tories, I have to warn you, a party that has so completely severed its relationship with the future, that is prepared to scorch the earth just to get at us. They will be dangerous.

“Trust me, wherever you think the line is, they’ve already got plans to cross it.

“They will be up for the fight. They’re always up for the fight to save their own skin. And this isn’t over. In fact, it’s barely begun.

“So we have to be disciplined, focused, ready to fight back, and confident, conference, because we have come so far already.

“We’ve dragged this party back to service. We can do the same for politics.”

(AP)

Matt Mathers10 October 2023 15:14
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Man arrested after Starmer heckled

A man has been arrested after Starmer was heckled onstage during his speech.

A 28-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of assault, breach of the peace and causing a public nuisance, Merseyside Police has said.

The force has not provided any further details at this stage.

Matt Mathers10 October 2023 15:18
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Starmer: I won’t stop fighting for working people

Concluding his speech, Sir Keir Starmer said he has “felt the anxiety” of a cost-of-living crisis in the past and he would fight for those who need help now.

He said: “I grew up working class, I’ve been fighting all my life, and I won’t stop now.

“I’ve felt the anxiety of a cost-of-living crisis before and until your family can see the way out, I will fight for you. That’s my mission and we will do it.”

He added: “A plan for a Britain built to last, a plan to heal the wounds, a plan to turn the page and say, in a cry of defiance to all those who now write our country off, Britain must, Britain can, Britain will get its future back.”

Matt Mathers10 October 2023 15:20
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People Demand Democracy claims responsibility for glitter stunt

A group called People Demand Democracy has claimed responsibility for a protest which saw Sir Keir Starmer covered in glitter.

The organisation, described as “friends” by Just Stop Oil, is calling for a “a fair, proportional voting system for Westminster elections”, as well as a “legally-binding national House of Citizens” to be selected by democratic lottery.

In a press release, the group said: “The people of the UK are more disillusioned by the state of our politics than at any time in living memory – look at the polls. After years of battling over Brexit, lockdown parties, abuse claims, crumbling public services and crashing living standards, people are sick to the back teeth of politicians. And we are furious there is no way to make our voices heard. This has got to change.

“We need a democratic alternative that gives the people of the UK a voice to deal with the major challenges of our time: rampant inequality, an escalating climate crisis, political corruption and on. But what do we have instead? A Labour Party offering very little in terms of real change.”

(Getty Images)

Matt Mathers10 October 2023 15:35
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Not all MPs happy with Starmer’s speech

Keir Starmer’s speech appears to have gone down a storm with delegates, activists, MPs and others inside the conference hall.

But it seems that not everybody in the party was happy with the address, in which Starmer promised a “decade of renewal” if Labour wins the next general election.

Jeremy Corbyn, Starmer’s predecessor as party leader and now an independent MP after getting kicked out of Labour, was quick to off the mark to criticise the leadership, tweeting minutes after the speech concluded that “we will keep campaigning for social justice”.

“As the Labour leadership rolls out the red carpet for climate vandals, arms firms and private healthcare, thousands of us are organising for the bold change this country needs. We will keep campaigning for social justice and peace,” he said.

“We are the movement for the many, not the few.”

Matt Mathers10 October 2023 15:43
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The five key moments in Keir Starmer’s speech

Keir Starmer gave his annual keynote speech to Labour conference on Tuesday – in what could be his last in opposition.

After a rocky start in which he was interrupted by protesters, his speech appeared to go down well in the room, even if it was light on unexpected or new policy announcements.

Here are five key takeaways from the opposition leader’s address to members. Jon Stone reports:

The five key moments in Keir Starmer’s speech

The big takeaways from the opposition leader’s annual address to Labour conference

Matt Mathers10 October 2023 16:00
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Have party conferences had any impact on Labour and Tory popularity? Join the Independent Debate

As conference season draws to a close, have both parties’ annual jamborees had any impact on their popularity?

Join the debate by telling us your thoughts and opinions via the following link.

Make sure you adhere to our community guidelines, which can be found here. For a full guide on how to comment click here.

Party conferences - tell us if they change your view on Labour and the Tories

Do party conferences make a difference to voters at all? Have your say

Matt Mathers10 October 2023 16:15
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Starmer not backing up rhetoric with ‘cold hard cash’ - Momentum

Hilary Schan, Momentum co-chairwoman, said: “Keir Starmer was right to say that, after 13 years of Tory misrule, we need national renewal akin to the post-war Labour government.

But by failing to back up this fine rhetoric with cold hard cash, Keir Starmer has fatally undermined his own prospects. You can’t fix a broken country on the cheap.

“Keir rightly said we need to get the NHS back on its feet, but as the British Medical Journal has said, we can’t do that without a major injection of funding.

“New towns are welcome – but without investment in social rent council housing, they won’t touch the sides of the housing crisis.

( )

Matt Mathers10 October 2023 16:30
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‘Tough year' ahead - shadow science secretary

Peter Kyle has said he is “daunted” by the prospect that lies ahead because “it is going to be a tough year”.

Speaking after the Labour Leader’s speech, the shadow science secretary said: “The speech was fantastic. What the speech did was set out a realistic 10-year programme of renewal for our country, it was honest, and it was hopeful.

“We saw a conference that is united for the people of Israel in their moment of suffering. We saw a conference that is united behind a vision for a better Britain, and we saw a conference that is united behind its leader.

“So there is hope, there is unity, and there is purpose. We are just desperate to get cracking with the job.”

He added: “I’m excited. I’m hopeful. I’m daunted by the prospect that lies ahead because it’s going to be a tough year but I am absolutely hopeful that it can be done, it will be done and there is better days ahead for Britain because of this conference and the agenda set out by Keir Starmer.”

Meanwhile, shadow culture secretary Thangam Debbonaire, saud: “It was the speech of his life, but I think the most important thing is it was the speech for our country, for our times, to give hope back, to give a vision, to show that 13 years of Tory decline and frankly dismay that people are having to go through every single day, that that doesn’t have to be this way, that we can turn the page.”

The Labour MP for Hove was previously an aid worker in the Balkans
The Labour MP for Hove was previously an aid worker in the Balkans
Thangam Debbonaire (House of Commons/PA)
Thangam Debbonaire (House of Commons/PA) (PA Archive)
Matt Mathers10 October 2023 16:45
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What is a greyfield site? Keir Starmer’s plan to overhaul housebuilding in UK

Sir Keir Starmer has uneviled Labour’s plans for a “new generation” of large towns and suburbs in the UK.

As part of his “decade of renewal”, he told the Labour party conference in Liverpool that he plans to build 1. 5 million homes in urban areas in an effort to deal with Britain’s housing crisis.

Plans to do so will mean releasing area of ‘low-quality’ land such as scrubland, car parks or deserted shopping centres from the greenbelt.

Athena Stavrou reports:

Labour housing plans: What is a greyfield site?

The plans will see low-quality greenbelt areas be released to develop affordable housing

Matt Mathers10 October 2023 17:00

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