Sunday 12 September 2021 12:24 pm

Sir Keir Starmer to publish 14,000-word mission statement in leadership reset

Sir Keir Starmer will publish a 14,000-word mission statement with the Fabian Society to signal a reset of his party leadership to Labour members.

The essay, which has been confirmed by the historic Labour think tank, will come out just before the party’s conference at the end of this month and will attempt to silence his internal and external critics who say he has no vision.

It is expected to be a presentation of what Starmer thinks the Labour party needs to represent in the 2020s to achieve electoral success.

A source close to the Labour leader told the Sunday Times that the essay would be an “intellectualised version” of his conference speech.

They added: “It’s supposed to set out the Starmer credo. It’s essentially the answer to those who say: ‘What do you believe in and what do you stand for?’

“And I am sure that it will suffice and do that job.”

The Labour leader began to write the essay during a summer tour across Red Wall northern constituencies that in the 2019 election turned their back on the party.

Former Tony Blair speechwriter Philip Collins and recently resigned deputy head of Labour communications Paul Ovenden helped him write the speech.

Starmer has come under criticism over the past six months from all wings of the Labour party for not having enough of a vision for the future or a plan to win an election.

He also oversaw a catastrophic set of local elections in May and a massive loss in the Hartlepool by-election – a former Labour stronghold.

The results saw Greater Manchester mayor, and former health secretary, Andy Burnham make clear his ambition to once again run for the party leadership.

However, Labour has begun to rebound in the polls and have pulled level with Boris Johnson’s Conservatives after the government’s National Insurance hike this week.

This could turn into a lead if Labour sees the usual post-conference polling bounce.

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