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From Working Class Roots To Labour Leadership: Who Is Keir Starmer?

Keir Starmer, born on 2 September 1962, is a prominent figure in British politics. Since 2020, he has been the leader of the Labour Party, simultaneously serving as the Leader of the Opposition in the United Kingdom (UK). Early Life Keir Starmer was born in Oxted, a small town in Surrey, England. He comes from […]

Keir Starmer, born on 2 September 1962, is a prominent figure in British politics. Since 2020, he has been the leader of the Labour Party, simultaneously serving as the Leader of the Opposition in the United Kingdom (UK).

Early Life

Keir Starmer was born in Oxted, a small town in Surrey, England. He comes from a simple family. His father worked as a toolmaker, while his mother was a nurse. They lived in a modest house called a “pebble-dash semi”, which Starmer often talks about to show his working-class roots. His childhood was marked by his mother’s battle with Still’s disease, a rare autoimmune condition that eventually robbed her of speech and mobility.

Education

Despite his modest background, Starmer’s academic journey was remarkable. He attended Reigate Grammar School, initially on a local council scholarship. Breaking family tradition, he became the first to pursue higher education, studying law at Leeds University and later at the prestigious Oxford University.

Family

Starmer is married to Lady Victoria Starmer. The couple have two children, a son and a daughter. Lady Starmer trained as a solicitor and the couple met through work. She now works in occupational health for the NHS.

Professional Career

Starmer became a lawyer in 1987. He chose to focus on human rights law, which means he helped protect people’s basic rights, his work took him across continents, from the Caribbean to Africa. In these places, he worked hard to help prisoners who were facing the death penalty. His commitment to justice was further represent when he offered pro bono services to activists in the famous McLibel case.

In 2008, Starmer was chosen to be the Director of Public Prosecutions. This meant he was in charge of all the lawyers who take criminals to court in England and Wales. It was the biggest job in his legal career.

Political Career

Starmer’s Political career began in 2015 when he was elected as the MP for Holborn and St Pancras. His rise within the Labour Party was meteoric. As the shadow Brexit secretary under Jeremy Corbyn, he worked through the difficult times of Britain leaving the EU. After Labour’s big loss in the 2019 general election, Starmer decided to run for leader. In April 2020, he won and promised to guide Labour “into a new era with confidence and hope”.

From his working-class origins to leading Her Majesty’s Opposition, Sir Keir Starmer’s journey is a testament to perseverance and dedication. As he charts Labour’s course in these challenging times, all eyes are on this former human rights lawyer turned political leader.

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Kier StarmerLABOUR PartyTDGThe Daily GuardianUK