Sir Kevin Barron honoured to have served as Rother Valley's MP

Sir KevinBarron.
Sir KevinBarron.

This will be my last column for the Worksop Guardian as, after more than 36 years in the House of Commons, I stood down this week, writes Sir Kevin Barron.

It has been the honour of my life to represent Rother Valley, a constituency that I first moved to at the age of eight when my father, a Durham miner, moved to South Yorkshire.

Having been elected in 1983, my baptism came very shortly after, when 4,500 miners went on strike for 12 months.

With the Orgreave coke works in my constituency, I was kept on my toes.

That was followed by three years as the Parliamentary Private Secretary to the then Leader of the Opposition.

The major work that I have done in the House is with select committees.

I chaired the health committee for five years, from 2005 to 2010.

One of the earliest things that committee did was to secure a free vote in the House on bringing in a comprehensive ban on smoking in public places.

Some people said at the time that it would be the end of the world as we knew it, but now people say that it is the most popular piece of public health legislation that the House has ever introduced.

I want to say a few words of thanks to some individuals.

For the last eight general elections, my friend and colleague Alan Goy was my political agent.

I also want to thank the staff who have supported me during my tenure including my current staff, Sheena Woolley, Jacquie Falvey and Natalie Robinson who support me in the constituency, and Kate Edwards and Michael Denoual, who worked with me in Parliament.

My wife has also been a massive support.

Sadly, I lost my first wife Carol in 2008, but Andree, who I married a few years ago, has been a pillar of support

It would be difficult for anybody to do this job without that type of support at home.

Finally, I’d like to thank the people of Rother Valley.

Whoever wins the seat at the election, I hope that they will feel the same satisfaction representing it that I have.

READ MORE: John Mann thanks voters for their support during his time as Bassetlaw MP.