John Cryer
Official portrait, 2019
Member of Parliament
for Leyton and Wanstead
Assumed office
6 May 2010
Preceded byHarry Cohen
Majority20,808 (46.7%)
Member of Parliament
for Hornchurch
In office
1 May 1997 – 11 April 2005
Preceded byRobin Squire
Succeeded byJames Brokenshire
Chair of the Parliamentary Labour Party
Assumed office
9 February 2015
LeaderEd Miliband
Jeremy Corbyn
Keir Starmer
Preceded byDavid Watts
Personal details
Born
John Robert Cryer

(1964-04-11) 11 April 1964 (age 59)
Darwen, Lancashire, England
Political partyLabour
Spouse
(m. 2012)
RelationsRachel Reeves (sister in-law)
Parents
Alma materUniversity of Hertfordshire
University of the Arts London
Websitejohncryermp.co.uk

John Robert Cryer (born 11 April 1964) is a British politician who has served as Member of Parliament (MP) for Leyton and Wanstead since 2010.[1] A member of the Labour Party, he was previously MP for Hornchurch from 1997 to 2005. Cryer has been Chair of the Parliamentary Labour Party since 2015.

Early life and education

John Robert Cryer was born on 11 April 1964 to Labour politicians Ann and Bob Cryer. Both of his parents became Members of Parliament,[2] and he served alongside his mother in the Commons from 1997 to 2005. As a child, he appeared in the 1970 film The Railway Children.

A journalist by profession, Cryer was educated at Oakbank School, Keighley, Hatfield Polytechnic and the London College of Printing.[3]

Political career

Cryer was on the left wing of the Labour Party and was a member of the Socialist Campaign Group until he resigned from the group in 2015. He has subsequently moved to the right of the party, supporting Keir Starmer's centrist leadership.[4][5]

He has worked for Tribune, the Morning Star, ASLEF and the Transport and General Workers' Union (now Unite).

Cryer describes himself as a Eurosceptic, and was one of only a small number of Labour MPs who campaigned and voted for the UK to leave the European Union in the 2016 referendum.[6] He consistently opposed holding a second referendum on EU membership.[7] His seat was targeted by the Pro-EU Liberal Democrats in the 2019 general election for his support for Brexit.[8]

As Member of Parliament for Hornchurch, Cryer had a record as a rebel. He voted against tuition fees and top-up fees for higher education, against cuts in lone parent benefits (the first major rebellion under the Blair government) and against the Iraq War.[citation needed] He lost this marginal seat in 2005, before being selected to succeed Harry Cohen in Leyton and Wanstead, a safe Labour seat; he comfortably retained it for the party at the 2010 general election.

Cryer was one of 16 signatories of an open letter to Ed Miliband in January 2015 calling on the party to commit to oppose further austerity, take rail franchises back into public ownership and strengthen collective bargaining arrangements.[9]

On 9 February 2015, Cryer was elected, unopposed, to succeed Dave Watts as the Chair of the Parliamentary Labour Party.[4]

On 8 May 2015, Cryer was re-elected as MP for the Leyton and Wanstead constituency with 58.6% of the vote. On 8 June 2017, he was re-elected as MP for the Leyton and Wanstead constituency with 69.8% of the vote.[10]

In July 2019, following the BBC Panorama programme "Is Labour Antisemitic?", Cryer condemned his party's attack on former staff whistleblowers who had appeared in the programme as "a gross misjudgment".[11]

Personal life

Cryer's second wife is Ellie Reeves, the Labour MP for Lewisham West and Penge, whose sister is Rachel Reeves, also a Labour MP.[12]

References

  1. ^ "Election 2010: Leyton and Wanstead". BBC News. Archived from the original on 23 August 2017. Retrieved 7 May 2010.
  2. ^ "MP For The Keighley Constituency Ann Cryer". Ilkley.org – Wharfedale's Community on the Web. Wharfedale Online Trust. Archived from the original on 27 December 2008. Retrieved 28 June 2009.
  3. ^ Times Guide to the House of Commons, 1997
  4. ^ a b "John Cryer Is The New Chair Of The PLP". LabourList. 9 February 2015. Archived from the original on 10 February 2015. Retrieved 10 February 2015.
  5. ^ "So how did a left-winger get to be chair of the parliamentary Labour party?". Left Futures. February 2015. Retrieved 6 August 2020.
  6. ^ "EU REFERENDUM – JOHN CRYER MP". www.johncryermp.co.uk. Archived from the original on 18 October 2017. Retrieved 17 October 2017.
  7. ^ "EU REFERENDUM | JOHN CRYER MP". www.johncryermp.co.uk. Archived from the original on 20 August 2019. Retrieved 15 November 2019.
  8. ^ Blackburn, Ralph (26 April 2017). "Election 2017: Wanstead's Lib Dem candidate – 'I'm the only person who will fight against a hard Brexit'". Ilford Recorder. Retrieved 29 May 2021.
  9. ^ Eaton, George (26 January 2015). "The Labour left demand a change of direction – why their intervention matters". New Statesman. London. Archived from the original on 12 April 2015. Retrieved 5 April 2015.
  10. ^ "Leyton and Wanstead". BBC News. Archived from the original on 8 May 2015. Retrieved 9 May 2015.
  11. ^ Mason, Rowena; Elgot, Jessica (15 July 2019). "Corbyn under fire from staff and Labour peers over antisemitism". The Guardian. London. Archived from the original on 21 July 2019.
  12. ^ Greatrex, Jonny (26 August 2012). "MP Tom Watson finds new love after break up of marriage". Birmingham Mail. Archived from the original on 14 October 2014.
Parliament of the United Kingdom Preceded byRobin Squire Member of Parliamentfor Hornchurch 19972005 Succeeded byJames Brokenshire Preceded byHarry Cohen Member of Parliamentfor Leyton and Wanstead 2010–present Incumbent Party political offices Preceded byDavid Watts Chair of the Parliamentary Labour Party 2015–present Incumbent