Jack Dromey: Birmingham ‘will not be the same’ without the veteran MPon January 8, 2022 at 11:53 am

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Tributes are paid across the West Midlands following the death of the Labour Erdington MP.

Jack Dromey

Image source, PA Media

Birmingham has “lost a dedicated servant” with the death of Jack Dromey and “will not be the same without him”, politicians have said as tributes pour in for the veteran Labour politician.

The MP for Erdington died suddenly in his flat on Friday, the shadow minister’s family said.

Politicians from across the political spectrum in the West Midlands have paid tribute to the 73-year-old.

“Jack was a man of the people,” Perry Barr’s Labour MP Khalid Mahmood said.

He added Mr Dromey was selected to stand for the Erdington seat in 2010 “purely because of his record for helping working people”, winning him the respect of people across the country, from both sides of the political divide.

Fellow Birmingham MPs echoed the view of Yardley’s Labour MP Jess Phillips, who tweeted his death had been a shock, adding the city would “not be the same without him”.

His death came just hours after Mr Dromey had spoken in a Commons debate on Afghan refugees and soon after he had attended a speech on Tuesday by Sir Keir Starmer.

“He was a bundle of energy, he was always on to the next thing, he always had an idea,” Selly Oak’s Steve McCabe told BBC Radio WM, adding that Dromey had always “loved” his constituency.

Jack Dromey addressing a Birmingham Council workers rally in 2010

Image source, PA Media

“A true Labour man,” the leader of Birmingham City Council, Labour’s Ian Ward tweeted, “who served the people of Erdington with passion and dedication”.

The shadow minister is survived by his wife, fellow Labour MP Harriet Harman, and his three children.

He made his name in politics in the union movement before winning the Erdington seat nearly 12 years ago and going on to serve in several senior Labour Party roles.

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Analysis – BBC News Correspondent, Phil Mackie

Jack Dromey represented everything good about a serving MP. He campaigned steadfastly for his constituents, whether they voted for him or not.

He happily worked alongside colleagues from other parties when they shared a common goal, whether to promote Erdington, Birmingham or the West Midlands.

Contrary to the general view that politicians are in it for themselves, he was not untypical. When I covered stories in which he was involved he was always honest, straightforward and helpful.

He was also a pro. When in need of a clip for an imminent news item, you could say, “Jack, could you sum that all up in 20 seconds?” – and after a brief pause he would, in exactly 20 seconds.

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Andy Street, the Conservative West Midlands Mayor, described him as a “dedicated servant” of Birmingham and tweeted a statement describing Mr Dromey as “a true democrat”.

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites.View original tweet on Twitter

Other Tory politicians in the West Midlands shared their tributes with Health Secretary and Bromsgrove MP Sajid Javid calling him “an incredibly compassionate, caring colleague”.

Mr Dromey’s passion for Birmingham and the West Midlands was remembered by The Wrekin’s Conservative MP Mark Pritchard, who added he was “very popular across the House”.

Tributes have also been paid by other figures in the region including the Chief Constable of West Midlands Police, Sir Dave Thompson, who called him “a good friend to policing”.

Queensbury School in Erdington, which caters for pupils with special educational needs, tweeted: “Thank you for being such a voice for all Special School Students in the city over the years and especially Queensbury School. Giving a voice to those without.”

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