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I am an experienced online journalist and political editor working for Trinity Mirror papers in the West Midlands and the North East, based in the Parliamentary Press Gallery at Westminster.

I understand how government, Parliament and political parties work. I am equally at home digging out stories from data, social media or interviews as I am covering major set-piece events or explaining how things work to readers.

I produce content which is shareable and promote my work on social media.

My experience with content management systems and knowledge of HTML allows me to include charts, embedded content from third parties and formatting in my work, to create content which encourages interaction and keeps readers on the page.

Contact me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. (but please send press releases to my work email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. as this is the email I monitor during working hours).

The website of Jonathan Walker, Political Editor for the Birmingham Post and Mail

Sir Albert Bore's 1999 prediction of an elected mayor for Birmingham

It’s been 12 years since Sir Albert Bore announced that it was inevitable Birmingham would follow London by choosing to be governed by an elected mayor.

Asked in 1999 about the future of local government, he said: “London is going to have a directly-elected mayor. When London starts to have...

Read more http://www.birminghampost.net/news/politics-news/2011/06/17/sir-albert-bore-s-1999-prediction-of-an-elected-mayor-for-birmingham-65233-28898161/

Mayor of Sandwell Joyce Underhill quits Lib Dems and joins Labour

The Liberal Democrat Mayor of Sandwell has quit the party - and crossed the floor to Labour, in protest at David Cameron’s comments about benefits for cancer patients in the House of Commons.

Lib Dem Councillor Joyce Underhill (Newton) - who took over as mayor last month - and her...

Read more http://www.birminghampost.net/news/politics-news/2011/06/16/mayor-of-sandwell-joyce-underhill-quits-lib-dems-and-joins-labour-65233-28891826/

In her own words: Sandwell's Lib Dem Mayor explains why she is defecting to Labour

I've spoken to Joyce Underhill, the mayor of Sandwell who has announced she is leaving the Liberal Democrats after 23 years and defecting to Labour.

Coun Underhill, who represents the ward of Newton and has been a councillor for 22 years, said David Cameron's comments in the House of Commons yesterday over cuts to benefits for some recovering cancer patients were "the straw that broke the camel's back".

She said: "It was a complete lack of compassion regarding the financial situation of cancer patients.
"Although he had received evidence from Macmillan Cancer about the effect, he just completely dismissed it.

"My husband [fellow councillor Tony Underhill, who is also defecting] has prostate cancer.

Read more http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/birmingham-post/news/jonathan_walker/~3/V2rTF_Ix6lg/in-her-own-words-sandwells-lib.html

Sandwell's Lib Dem Mayor defects to Labour in protest at cancer patients benefit cut

The Liberal Democrat Mayor of Sandwell has quit the party - and crossed the floor to Labour, in protest at David Cameron's comments about benefits for cancer patients in the House of Commons yesterday.

Lib Dem Councillor Joyce Underhill (Newton) and her husband Councillor Tony Underhill (Newton) who has himself got cancer, have resigned from the Liberal Democrats and join the Labour Party.

Joyce Underhill said: "We have been increasingly disillusioned with the Lib Dems since Nick Clegg went into coalition with the Conservatives.

"We have seen how police cuts here in the West Midlands have been particularly severe and undermine safety.

"But we felt a line was crossed when David Cameron seemed to have no idea of the impact of his own policies on cancer sufferers when he was speaking in the House of Commons yesterday. I could not believe the Prime Minister was so dismissive of an issue of this much importance."

Read more http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/birmingham-post/news/jonathan_walker/~3/0GHf9Fzflbg/sandwells-lib-dem-mayor-defect.html

Birmingham council's complaints about academies raise an important point say ministers

There was some surprise when the Conservative head of Birmingham education authority, the largest LEA in the country, branded elements of the Government's academy programme "immoral".

But a Government Minister has now admitted he may have a point.

Les Lawrence, Birmingham's Cabinet Member for Children, Young People and Families, complained that schools were restructuring their workforce - in some cases making staff redundant - and forcing the council to pick up the bill, before making the switch to academy
status.

As we reported earlier this month, he told a meeting of Birmingham Schools Forum: "This is immoral".

But Schools Minister Nick Gibb has revealed the Government has been talking to Coun Lawrence about the problem, and admitted he raises "an important point".

Read more http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/birmingham-post/news/jonathan_walker/~3/3uMvbpBbS90/birmingham-councils-complaints.html

David Cameron praises Birmingham City Council despite unlawful cutbacks

David Cameron has praised Birmingham City Council as an “excellent” local authority despite a High Court judgement which condemned “potentially devastating” cuts to care for elderly and disabled people.

The Prime Minister was challenged in the House of Commons to criticise the authority, after its decision to deny care to...

Read more http://www.birminghampost.net/news/politics-news/2011/06/15/david-cameron-praises-birmingham-city-council-despite-unlawful-cutbacks-65233-28883975/

Birmingham mayoral candidate Sion Simon calls for clean campaign

The former MP who wants to become the first elected mayor of Birmingham has called for a clean and “comradely” fight after his first rival was announced.

Sion Simon, who stood down as Erdington MP last year, must now compete with former council leader Sir Albert Bore to become the...

Read more http://www.birminghampost.net/news/politics-news/2011/06/15/birmingham-mayoral-candidate-sion-simon-calls-for-clean-campaign-65233-28879094/

Birmingham MP accused of hypocrisy over post office closures

One of Birmingham’s newest MPs has been accused of being a “hypocritical Johnny-come-lately” over his campaign against post office closures.

The outspoken jibe against Erdington Labour MP Jack Dromey came from Conservative city council leader Mike Whitby.

Answering questions at a full council meeting, Coun Whitby accused Mr Dromey of...

Read more http://www.birminghampost.net/news/politics-news/2011/06/15/birmingham-mp-accused-of-hypocrisy-over-post-office-closures-65233-28879097/

Bring on Greater Birmingham's Metro Mayor says Lord Adonis

Former Cabinet Minister Lord Adonis has resurrected the idea of a "Greater Birmingham" or "West Midlands" Mayor who would represent an area larger than the city, as he visits Birmingham today.

The former Transport Secretary is in town to launch a report produced by two think-tanks on "how elected mayors can help drive economic growth in England's cities", at an event in KPMG's offices in the city centre.

It backs the Government's plans to hold referendums on creating elected mayors in big cities including Birmingham and Coventry, but it also says they must be given more powers than the Government currently proposes.

And it calls for the creation of "metro mayors" who would take responsibility for a larger area than a single local authority.

Read more http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/birmingham-post/news/jonathan_walker/~3/z071KQ838Pg/bring-on-greater-birminghams-m.html

Albert Bore launches Birmingham mayor bid with underground train plan

Birmingham Labour leader Sir Albert Bore has launched his campaign to become the city’s first elected mayor by reviving plans for a city centre underground railway.

The council’s opposition leader is the second Labour politician to throw his hat into the ring for a job which does not yet exist...

Read more http://www.birminghampost.net/news/politics-news/2011/06/14/albert-bore-launches-birmingham-mayor-bid-with-underground-train-plan-65233-28871239/

Study calls for elected mayors to have increased powers

Big city mayors will help to cut unemployment and improve public transport – but they must be given more powers, a major study has recommended.

The hard-hitting report is published by a think-tank led by former Government Minister Lord Adonis, who earlier this year delivering a highly critical speech blasting Birmingham...

Read more http://www.birminghampost.net/news/politics-news/2011/06/14/study-calls-for-elected-mayors-to-have-increased-powers-65233-28870594/

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About me

Jonathan Walker Political Editor of the Birmingham Post, Birmingham Mail, Sunday Mercury, Coventry Telegraph, Newcastle Journal, Newcastle Chronicle and Sunday Sun.

Contact me:

Email jonathan@walkerjon.com (but please send press releases to my work email which is
jon.walker@trinitymirror.com, as this is the email I monitor during working hours).

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