'Action, not words:' Sir Keir Starmer tells Gary Neville plans for Labour government in new party election broadcast

Sir Keir Starmer, and Gary Neville in the Labour’s Party Election Broadcast in the Langdale Valley, Lake District
-Credit: (Image: Labour Party)


Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer has promised 'action, not words' in the party's new election broadcast released tonight (Thursday June 19). The broadcast features football pundit and former Manchester United star Gary Neville as the pair take a walk together through the Lake District.

Sir Starmer also vows to 'hit the ground running' should he be elected as new Prime Minister. The general election takes place on Thursday July 4 after Rishi Sunak confirmed the date in a statement outside Number 10 last month.

The Labour leader outlined his first steps and immediate priorities to deliver for the British people on day one of a Labour government to Neville. "Day one first; stabilise the economy, we have to get that back under control; making sure we're bringing down the waiting list - 40,000 appointments each and every week. And that's 2 million a year extra to bring down that waiting list," he begins.

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"Border Security Command that will smash the gangs that are running the vile trade of putting people in boats across the channel; set up Great British Energy - we can do that from the start - a publicly owned company generating renewable energy owned by the taxpayer, making money for the taxpayer; making sure we're dealing with anti-social behaviour with 13,000 neighbourhood police; and with sleeves rolled up, recruiting the 6,500 teachers we need in our secondary schools are particularly in core subjects like maths. They're the first steps.”

Asked if he already had a team working on that day one preparation four months out, Sir Starmer confirmed he put his party on that footing: “Yes. I said [months ago] I don't want you having a conversation on day one. I need you to deliver for me, so you need to be ready to deliver from the get go. So that's the footing I've had them on."

Langdale Valley in the Lake District was a regular family holiday destination for Keir Starmer when he was younger.
Langdale Valley in the Lake District was a regular family holiday destination for Keir Starmer when he was younger. -Credit:Labour Party

Both climbed the foothills of the Langdale Pikes, a sentimental place for the Labour leader. Most summers his mother and father - both now passed - would drive the family up to the area to holiday there, where they’d climb the crags and eat fish and chips by the lakeside.

The family grew attached to the area especially after striking an unlikely friendship with esteemed fellwalker and sketcher, Alfred Wainwright MBE, who stayed in touch with the Starmers after meeting by chance on a fellside one summer. Wainwright even wrote to Keir’s mother, Jo Starmer, when she became ill with a card telling her: ‘The hills are waiting for you’.

Sir Starmer remembers that his mother, Jo, wouldn’t go on holiday abroad, but instead would choose to take her children to the Cumbrian fells. Visiting the miners’ cottages next to the Langdale Valley where the Starmer family would stay each summer, Neville asked the Labour leader: “if your mum and dad were here now, in these cottages, what would they be saying to you?”

An emotional Keir Starmer, reflecting on what his parents would make of his career, said: “they'd be having a real moment, and so am I actually. If she was back here now… and I was in a race to be a candidate for the Prime Minister of the country, they'd be really proud. It’d be a really incredible moment. It really would.”

Asked how he would change the public perception that all politicians are 'the same’, the Labour leader said he would act immediately to return service back to politics: “Action, not words. I don't think people are going to believe that politics has changed until they see it has changed. The first thing is returning politics to service because it's a public service… you're here to serve the country."