Monday 29 November 2021


Yvette Cooper and Dave Lammy are the big movers in Keir Starmer's surprise reshuffle.  Cooper returns to the shadow cabinet after a six year stint on the backbenches, taking on the role she relinquished in 2015 - shadow home secretary.  She replaces the painfully dull Nick Thomas-Symonds, who is demoted to shadow international trade secretary.  Speculation was rife all afternoon that Emily Thornberry was to get the shadow home secretary job, but it appears that Starmer may have realised that the appointment of another wealthy London Remainer wouldn't have gone down well in Labour's forgotten heartlands.

Lammy replaces Lisa Nandy as shadow foreign secretary.  Nandy is demoted to shadow levelling up secretary (yes, that is a real post).

Wes Streeting replaces the hapless Jonathan Ashworth as shadow health secretary.  Ashworth is demoted to shadow work and pensions, which is a shame because his media gaffes were a never-ending source of amusement.

Lord Falconer, Kate Green, Nia Griffith, Luke Pollard and Cat Smith all leave the front benches.  Smith has not been replaced as shadow secretary of state for young people and democracy, suggesting that the position has been abolished.  It had been created by Jeremy Corbyn in 2015.

Starmer's front bench changes can be found in full, below.

Yvette Cooper, shadow home secretary - replaces Nick Thomas-Symonds
David Lammy, shadow foreign secretary - replaces Lisa Nandy
Wes Streeting, shadow health secretary - replaces Jonathan Ashworth
Bridget Phillipson, shadow education secretary - replaces Kate Green
Jonathan Reynolds, shadow business secretary - replaces Ed Miliband
Jim McMahon, shadow environment secretary - replaces Luke Pollard
Louise Haigh, shadow transport secretary - replaces Jim McMahon
Ed Miliband, shadow climate secretary - new post, previously abolished in 2016
Lisa Nandy, shadow levelling up secretary - replaces Steve Reed
Lucy Powell, shadow culture secretary - replaces Jo Stevens
Jonathan Ashworth, shadow work and pensions secretary - replaces Jonathan Reynolds
Nick Thomas-Symonds, shadow international trade secretary - replaces Emily Thornberry
Steve Reed, shadow justice secretary - replaces Dave Lammy
Emily Thornberry, shadow attorney general - replaces Lord Falconer
Pat McFadden, shadow chief secretary to the treasury - replaces Bridget Phillipson
Jo Stevens, shadow secretary of state for Wales - replaces Nia Griffith
Peter Kyle, shadow secretary of state for Northern Ireland - replaces Louise Haigh