Mrs Pinnock goes to Westminster

Kath Pinnock will soon be sworn into the House of Lords, but the Cleckheaton councillor has promised not to turn her back on the town.

Coun Pinnock was given a peerage by Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg earlier this month, but only heard of the announcement while on holiday.

“I was in the hills of North Yorkshire when they announced it,” she said. “I was only asked whether I was interested in it a couple of weeks before!”

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A ceremony will take place this autumn to introduce her to the House of Lords, and the Peaseland Close resident believes it will be different to what she is used to in Kirklees Council.

She added: “It is a very strange ceremony where we put on red robes, make an oath and are given a title.

“But I think there is no point going into the House unless you try and make a difference. I want to use my time there to raise local issues.

Coun Pinnock intends to remain as a Kirklees Councillor and said she wants people in Spen to feel like they have someone on their side in Britain’s highest seat of government.

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She added: “I think the problem with a parliament based in London is sometimes it does not realise that, in Yorkshire, life is different.

“We don’t have semi-detached houses selling for £1m, for example, and the challenges people face here are different, and it is important they realise that.”