'Labour's Future Communications Strategy' will be an informal discussion about how the new Labour leadership should shape its communications strategy in order to win the next election. The discussion will be future-focused rather than dissecting what went wrong in the Corbyn era, while an analysis of this is likely to come up in discussion.

While Labour’s communications will be defined by coronavirus for the foreseeable future, the discussion will also incorporate some of the broader, more deep-rooted issues Labour has in presenting itself to the electorate.

Discussion points:

  • Starmer’s first two months as Labour leader What has he got right and what has he got wrong in communicating during the coronavirus crisis?
  • How should the new leadership approach the media? How Starmer deal with papers traditionally hostile to Labour? Should Labour try to bypass these titles through social media, ‘outriders’ etc? How should Labour approach the BBC?
  • Scotland Should Labour be more aggressive toward the SNP? Should Labour appear more strongly unionist? 
  • Rebuilding the Red Wall How should Labour communicate its opposition to a no-deal/hard Brexit? Is a perceived lack of patriotism a problem for Labour in these red wall seats?


Event panellists


Johanna Baxter, Labour NEC and Scottish Labour SEC

Johanna Baxter has Labour and its values running through her family. As the granddaughter of a Killoch pit miner, Johanna has campaihned for the Party in every election since she joined the party aged 16. Since then she has held officer positions at every level of the Party, including as Chair of the Southwark Labour Local Campaigns Forum, where she oversaw the selection of council candidates across the borough.

As a trade union official for over a decade she has fought a daily battle for better terms and conditions at work for thousands of employees in both the private and public sectors. Her first experience of activism involved representing fellow workers in a Glasgow call centre, as a CWU rep, whilst funding her own way through her degree in politics and law from Strathclyde University. She has also enjoyed spells on the Young Fabians Executive, as a school governor in Birmingham and as guest editor for LabourList.

Under new leadership Johanna has just been elected onto Labour's NEC for the second time, after facing a spell away from the Committee.


Mark Glover, Chief Executive of Newman Communications

Mark has an unrivalled understanding of the interface between politics, communications and business. Founder of Newington in 2006, Mark leads the award-winning consultancy to its UK TOP TEN rating and sits on parent company SECNewgate's Board. Newington has offices in London, Manchester, Edinburgh, Birmingham and Chelmsford.

SECNewgate has 600 staff in 30 offices in 14 countries. Mark is a Fellow of the PRCA and sits on the Public Affairs Board Executive Committee. Mark was as a Labour Councillor in Southwark 2002-14, including six years as Chairman of the Labour Group, and two years as Chairman of the Audit and Governance Committee. He was also Chairman of the Regeneration Scrutiny Committee, Chairman of Nunhead and Peckham Rye Community Council and Shadow Spokesperson for Communications. He was a campaign manager in three General Elections for the Labour Party. He is a published author of articles on Labour, Politics, Public Affairs and Business. He was an expert witness on lobbying transparency in front of the Council of Europe.


Tom Flynn, Director of Digital at Newington Communications and Labour councillor for Camberwell Green

Tom is Director of Newington’s digital team and works with a wide range of clients on digital strategy, marketing and communications. Prior to joining Newington, Tom ran a small digital consultancy business advising a range of political clients on social media strategy and delivery for parliamentary work and elections - both in the UK and abroad. He specialises in targeted digital advertising and data acquisition – using data to identify supporters and target messaging at key segments of the electorate. An active member of the Labour Party, he is a local councillor and a former parliamentary candidate.


This event will be hosted by the Harry McNeill from the Young Fabians Communications Network. To register for the event please click here: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_09BSKZcAR7igqsT3l-PFqQ

May 27, 2020 at 6:30pm - 8:30pm
Zoom Registration
Charles King-Tenison Amy Nash Will Gray Dominic Stewart Matthew Oulton Thomas Messenger Thomas Froehlich Charlie Ensor

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Charles King-Tenison
Amy Nash
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Dominic Stewart
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