As reported by Pits n Pots earlier today, Gary Elsby has now confirmed that Mike Barnes will be working as his election campaign manager, for his bid to win the Stoke-on-Trent Central seat from the Labour candidate, Tristram Hunt.
A press release from Gary this evening said:
Former Labour CLP Secretary, Gary Elsby’s campaign to become MP for Stoke Central, against Tristram Hunt, Labour’s parachuted in candidate, stepped up a gear in momentum today as Gary announces that former Stoke-on-Trent Labour Leader, Cllr Mike Barnes, has been appointed as his Election Agent and Campaign Manager.
Gary said, ‘I have been overwhelmed by the amount of people getting in touch to offer support and wishing me well, not just from Stoke but from all around the country – people that I have never even met as well as many people in Stoke. I am very pleased that Mike Barnes has offered to be my election agent and coordinate my campaign. He has a lot of experience in politics and particularly in successful public campaigns. Mike is now working on planning my campaign and bringing together a team from those that have offered to help me including a number of Labour members about to leave the party because of the Tristram Hunt fiasco.’
The press release went on to say:
Mike Barnes is widely regarded as one of the leading public campaigners in the City having led the successful campaign to get rid of the Elected Mayor in 2008, the only Elected Mayor system to be scrapped in the UK, when many professional pundits said it could not be done.
Mike Barnes has previously held the position as Labour Group Leader on Stoke City Council, Deputy Leader, as well as Stoke-on-Trent Labour’s Election Coordinator during 2004 when Labour won 13 out of 19 seats, against the national trend and one of only three councils in the country in which Labour made gains.