About

Hereford and South Herefordshire Labour Party is made up of ordinary people gathering to discuss local issues, to canvass, campaign and raise vital funds to ensure our continued work in the community.  

Our members elect a team of officers to the Executive Committee to manage the direction of the local party. These members are all volunteers who give up their time to improving South Herefordshire and the lives of its residents.

Janice Hurne  
Chair  

I have been a member of the Labour Party since 1999 and before moving to Herefordshire was an active member of the Labour Party in Bournemouth, taking on several different Executive Committee roles as well as increasing the Labour vote as Parliamentary Candidate for New Forest West constituency in 2005 and 2010. I was elected as a Bournemouth Borough Councillor for a north Bournemouth ward which included community involvement as a School Governor of both a primary and secondary school, as well as supporting the Sure Start Family Centre and development of the Area Forum. 

My early professional life included two years teaching Maths in a North London comprehensive school and ten years as a computer programmer/analyst in the civil service. I then moved into Higher Education teaching and spent twenty-two years as a Senior Lecturer in Information Systems Design and Management, and Manager of Learning and Teaching for the School of Design, Engineering and Computing at Bournemouth University. 

In 2012, on retirement, I moved to Ross-on-Wye, having had family connections with Herefordshire for many years.  I have a daughter and three-year-old granddaughter. My personal interests are enjoyment of the natural world, caring for the environment, as a member of a co-counselling community, and creative arts and crafts.   

The Labour Party in Herefordshire can grasp this opportunity to build a strong Labour vote in Hereford and South Herefordshire. We are in this for the long term, and have a development plan and vision that is positive and exciting. We can show people that local politics can be rewarding and that together we can build a fairer and more equal society in Herefordshire.  

Get in touch with Janice: chair@herefordshirelabour.com 

Anna Coda  
Vice Chair – Campaigns

I joined the party as a student in 1975 in Leicester and moved to Hereford at the end of 1979.  Experiencing the, then, marginal seat of Leicester South in a Labour dominated city allowed me to gain valuable knowledge and experience to start my campaigning in South Herefordshire.  

I held various branch and constituency positions during the 1980s and 1990s and was constituency chair from 2012 to 2018, during which time I had to reform the party with help from other members. I contested District Council elections on several occasions in the 1980s, Herefordshire County elections in 2011 and 2017 and was the General Election candidate in 2015 and 2017.  

My main political concerns are the changes in the NHS, housing and rising inequality since the 1980s. My political influences as I grew up were the civil rights movement in the US and the Vietnam war.  

Get in touch with Anna: vicechair@herefordshirelabour.com. 

Gemma Dean  
Vice Chair – Membership

I currently work for Wye Valley NHS Trust and as Branch Secretary for UNISON’s Herefordshire Health branch. I am a Hereford girl and most of my family live between Herefordshire and Swansea. I moved away for university and job roles and have lived in a number of places throughout the UK before returning to our county in 2012.  

I have a background in public service law and regulation, having worked at a number of councils and civil service departments. I am currently studying my Masters in Industrial Relations and Employment Law at Keele University.  

I am passionate about trade unionism and have been on countless demonstrations over the past few years to challenge Tory austerity. I am unashamed in my fight to defend our public services from the Tory cuts and believe that we need a stronger challenge locally to ensure that we make Herefordshire a county of opportunity for the many and not the few.  

My role in Hereford and South Herefordshire Labour Party is to engage with new members and encourage current members to take an active role in creating a stronger and bigger local party so that we are able to sufficiently challenge the Conservative Party in South Herefordshire

Get in touch with Gemma: membership@herefordshirelabour.com. 

Dr Margy Whalley CBE  
Secretary

I have an amazing daughter Natasha and three gorgeous grandchildren; Molly, Tom and Harriet. Their lovely dad Ben is from Hereford originally and they all moved down last year from Manchester. I retired as Head of Pen Green, a Maintained Nursery School and Children’s Centre in Corby and moved across to join them.  

I have worked for over forty years in education and community development projects in England, Brazil and Papua New Guinea – always in the public sector. I love community work and really believe we should be encouraging families to design, develop and run their public services.  

I stood against a safe Tory seat in Corby’s rural ward, and although I did not win, I did at least reduce the Tory majority from 500 to 25. What did I learn? We have to keep trying and if we can harness the community’s real desire for something better for their children then we can make a difference. 

I have been a Labour member since I left school and am still a passionate advocate for children and families and for the amazing, but generally underpaid, staff who work with them. I want Labour to win as many seats as possible in South Herefordshire and am looking forward to getting out there and making our voices heard.  

Get in touch with Margy: secretary@herefordshirelabour.com.

Adam Kean  
Treasurer

I was born in Liverpool in 1965 and moved to London in 1981. In that time I was a TV service technician, motorbike despatch rider, bus driver, community transport fleet manager and driver trainer, university ICT technical supporter and trainer, student of Economics, criminal law defense practitioner and disability financial advisor for MIND. I cut my legal teeth working for two London Boroughs: Croydon and Newham. Without the cheap housing and free education I received, I would not be the person I am today.  

I moved away from London to Ross-On-Wye in 2010 because the pollution was affecting my health. Since then, I have survived cancer thanks to our NHS. I have been involved with Labour on-and-off for many years and re-joined because I think we are nearing the last opportunity to roll-back the market driven agenda of the last thirty years. For me politics is about choices. There is no “natural” state of affairs. 

Most of my family are self-employed and for me, a Labour government can work for everyone who works for a living through fair taxation and support for people who want to get on with their lives. 

I was co-opted as treasurer in May 2018 and, since, have met some fantastic people with interesting lives and stories to tell. If you would like to get involved, we would be pleased to hear from you. To continue to make Herefordshire a better place for everyone, we need your support.  

Get in touch with Adam: treasurer@herefordshirelabour.com. 

 Helen Astley  
Trade Union Liaison Officer

I was born in Hereford in 1982 and have lived in the city all my life. I have been married to Mark for eleven years and we live in Tupsley with our two dogs, Abby and Rusty. 

I started working at Hereford Library as a Saturday assistant in 1998 and have worked for the Library service ever since. I became a UNISON member early in 2002, soon after gaining full time employment at the Library and over the years became more active within the union. After campaigning against Library service cuts five years ago, I was asked to consider training as a UNISON steward (rep). It’s not something I had thought about before, but I’ve never looked back! I am now Chair of the Herefordshire Local Government Branch and work at our office at The Cider Museum two days a week, whilst maintaining my role at the library three days a week.  

Whilst training as a steward in 2014, I met several Labour Party councillors from various authorities in the Birmingham area. They really inspired me and I joined the Labour Party in October 2014. Anna Coda contacted me a few months later during the 2015 General Election campaign and, once again, I’ve never looked back. I delivered leaflets on Anna’s behalf and attended my first General Meeting in September 2015.  

My heart lies in trade unionism and so being the Trade Union Liaison Officer for the Hereford and South Herefordshire Labour Party makes me very proud. 

Get in touch with Helen: tulo@herefordshirelabour.com

Amanda Lawrence  
Diversity Officer 

Diversity Officer is a role that is of great interest to me as I am very concerned about Human Rights issues. I’m active in my local Amnesty International group, speaking to schools and organising events and monthly groups. I am also a State Co-ordinator for Human Writes, enabling penfriendships with prisoners on “death row”. I work full-time with people with mental health challenges and learning disabilities, belong to a faith group and have some voluntary work locally. I came to Hereford five years ago and settled in a little flat in Hunderton with my pets and garden (which I tend with much enthusiasm and enjoyment but rather less skill)! 

I re-joined the Labour Party the day after Jeremy Corbyn was elected. I am excited to belong to a party which offers real social change, a workable, feasible radical manifesto and an ethical foreign policy. Our world is unstable and we have stark choices – compassion, justice, and cohesion, or a bitter conflict between the haves and have-nots, where the odds to the latter are unfavourable and the winner will take all. 

I would be very glad to hear from any member who has an interest in LGBT issues or would like to be further involved in activities around this. Services in Hereford are sparse and suggestions for how the party could work for improvements would be welcome. 

Get in touch with Amanda: diversity@herefordshirelabour.com. 

Kelsey Francis 
Youth Officer

I joined the Labour Party at the start of 2018 as I believe there has never been a more important time for young people to become active in politics. With the systematic cuts and closures of vital youth services, the abolish of housing benefit for 18 to 21-year-olds and the average age of buying your first home rising to thirty years old, I believe that if we continue along this trend that we are not only doing a grave injustice to the lives of the current young generation but also to future ones.  

I have always supported the Labour Party even before joining as a member. My main passions include the protection and advancement of environmental and animal rights. As a strong advocate for the strengthening of the Hunting Act and an end to the badger cull, I am certain that Labour is the only party that can bring about real change on these issues.  

Part of my role within the Hereford and South Herefordshire Labour Party has been to develop our online presence, through this website and our social media channels. As Youth Officer, my responsibility is to motivate new and existing members aged 14 to 26 to become active within the party and to encourage them to speak out on the issues most important to them.  

Get in touch with Kelsey: youth@herefordshirelabour.com. 

 Muriel Smith  
Women’s Officer 

I am 76 years old and have lived in Hereford for 33 years. I am a retired catering manager. 

I have been a Labour Party member for several years, and in the last two years have become an active member of the Hereford City Labour Party branch, and its founder treasurer. I am also the women’s officer for our Constituency Labour Party. 

I am a supporter of the party’s national leadership and the party’s current manifesto. 

I am honoured to have been chosen as the CLP delegate to conference in Liverpool in September, 2018. 

I am lucky to be still active and enjoy organising some local Labour Party events. 

Get in touch with Muriel: women@herefordshirelabour.com. 

Scott Morris  
Communities Officer 

Get in touch with Scott: communities@herefordshirelabour.com. 

Des Woods  
Fundraising Officer 

Originally from Northern Ireland, I moved to Gloucestershire in 1997 and then to Hereford in 2010 when I married my wife Christine. I have had an active membership and involvement within the Labour Party since 2015.  

I have been involved in General Election campaigns both in our county and in Stroud, including the most recent 2017 General Election. I was also active during the Referendum that decided Britain’s exit from the European Union. I campaigned on the Remain side, yet could understand people’s concerns and frustrations on the Leave side of the party membership. I have always supported other members during their campaigns for local by-elections, including acting as agent.  

I stood as a candidate in April 2018 for Parish Council (Bobblestock), the first member to do so this century.  

I know politics can be hard work but I firmly believe it is also fun.  

Get in touch with Des: fundrasing@herefordshirelabour.com. 

Carol Swart  
Hereford City Branch Secretary 

I joined the Labour Party in 1970 and have been a member ever since. I am a retired teacher with two grown-up sons and two grandchildren. I’ve lived in Hereford for 33 years. I love to go dancing with my husband and practice T’ai Chi. 

I was brought up in a working-class family in the North of England, and although my life is very different now, I still remember life as it was; I want to help to give everyone the opportunity to achieve their full potential. 

I am a socialist and have campaigned on many issues over the years. In the 70s, I campaigned for child care provision: for after school centres and nurseries that could be accessed by everyone, as in those days there was only provision for those who could pay for it. I campaigned vigorously against the National Front and was even unjustly ‘kettled’ by the police whilst on an anti-fascist march. I have worked to enable women to achieve equal rights but there is still more to do! I believe that everyone should have equal opportunity and believe that the Labour Party is the only political party that can bring that about. 

I have been re-energised in the last two years by a national manifesto that puts the needs of the many before the few. I believe that if we can get that message out to people we can get Jeremy Corbyn elected next time and improve the lives of all.  

For enquiries relating to local branch meetings get in touch with Carol: herefordcitybranch@herefordshirelabour.com. 

Margot Williams  
Ross and District Branch Secretary 

For enquiries relating to local branch meetings get in touch with Margot: rossbranch@herefordshirelabour.com. 

 

For press and general enquiries get in touch with:  admin@herefordshirelabour.com.