Former Emmerdale star could stand in Batley and Spen by-election

Emmerdale actress Tracy Brabin during her campaign alongside Jo Cox to save Batley library
Emmerdale actress Tracy Brabin during her campaign alongside Jo Cox to save Batley library

ACTRESS Tracy Brabin has revealed that she is thinking about standing in the Batley and Spen by-election.

The Batley-born former Emmerdale, Coronation Street and Eastenders actress said she wants to hear what people in both towns think first – and that her late friend Jo Cox left huge shoes to fill.

She said: “I’ve been an activist in the Labour party for over 30 years.

“That’s why I wanted to come in and support Jo [during her parliamentary candidate campaign].

“She was hugely, hugely inspirational.

“She was the one, when we were going door-to-door, that said ‘would you consider going in to politics?’”

Mother-of-two Mrs Cox was passionate about getting more women involved in politics, Ms Brabin said.

But she added: “I haven’t decided [whether to stand] because I need to get some soundings from the people in Batley and Spen.”

She said that there is no schedule yet, so she does not want to get ahead of herself.

“It’s huge shoes to fill. Who could fill those shoes?

“Jo was an extraordinary person.

“But it’s about making sure there’s no void in Batley and Spen,” she added

And Ms Brabin said that if she was to go into politics, there is nowhere that she would rather stand for MP than in her home town.

She was brought up in Howden Clough and attended Heckmondwike Grammar School.

Ms Brabin, who was cast as the girlfriend of Ashley in Emmerdale in 2014, campaigned alongside Mrs Cox to save Batley Library from closure.

Speculation about possible candidates for the empty seat has surfaced during the past few weeks.

The Daily Mail’s website published an article which claimed that former MP David Miliband has been urged to run as a way to mount a Labour leadership campaign against Jeremy Corbyn.

Mr Miliband left politics after losing out in the 2010 Labour leadership race to his brother Ed.

No date has been set for the Batley and Spen by-election but it is understood that it will not take place until October at the earliest.

Mrs Cox was killed outside Birstall’s library on June 16.

The Conservative Party announced the day after her death that it would not contest the seat as mark of respect.

And the Liberal Democrats, UKIP and The Green Party also ruled out nominating a candidate.

But four people have put themselves forward.

Jack Buckby, 23, will contest the seat for Liberty GB.

English Democrat Therese Hirst will also stand.

UKIP member Waqas Ali Khan, 27, will contest the seat as an independent candidate.

And a media release published in June also suggested that Ankit Love of the One Love Party would contest the seat in memory of Mrs Cox.

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