Richard Corbett Labour MEP for Yorkshire & Humber

Labour MEP for Yorkshire & Humber

I’m Deputy Leader of the Labour Members of the European Parliament, part of the centre-left Socialists & Democrats group. I was first elected as an MEP in 1996, and I’ve represented Yorkshire & Humber since 1999.

I am also Vice-President of the European Movement in the UK


• Parliamentary activities

In the European Parliament, I sit on the following committees:

o Constitutional Affairs (AFCO) (full member)
o Fisheries (PECH) (full member)
o Economic & Monetary Affairs (ECON) (substitute member)

You can view a list of my recent activities in the European Parliament in the Transparency area of my website.
I’m also a member of a number of cross-party intergroups, which reflect my other political interests and priorities:

o Animal welfare intergroup
o Anti-racism and diversity intergroup
o Kashmir intergroup
o Sport intergroup
o Trade union intergroup

Election commitments
In the most recent European elections, my promises were to:

o make the case for Britain in Europe
o change EU policies that need reform
o build on EU successes and partial successes
o fight racism
o put climate change back on the agenda
o secure European funding for Yorkshire
o report back regularly and thoroughly

Personal interests
One of my daughters, when collecting stamps, said that I collect papers. That, and the fact that I’ve written several books that are highly valued by insomniacs, should convince you that I’m the most boring person you can safely vote for.
But I do also like sports (I used to race at skiing and played for the junior team of a second-division football club), travel and languages (I speak four and can read some others), and I have a fascination with maps.

• Childhood and student years
• Early career
• Work as an MEP
• Activities between 2009 and 2014

Although by now I’ve been to almost every nook and cranny of our wonderful region, I first got to know Yorkshire & Humber as a student at the University of Hull, having been born on the other side of the Pennines in Southport, Merseyside.

I was fortunate to go to university, the first generation of my family to do so. Before the 1945-1951 Labour government, it was normally impossible for working class people to go to university. In the case of my father, this was a tragedy because he was a brilliant man, but his steelworker father simply could not afford it. Instead, after the war (and a prisoner-of-war camp), he became a statistician and specialised in health statistics, where he was involved in pioneering new techniques and discoveries.

This led him eventually to work for the World Health Organisation in Geneva, which in turn meant I spent several teenage years in the multilingual and religiously pluralist country of Switzerland and went to school with children from over 100 countries.

I returned to England when I was 18 to go to university, winning a place at Oxford (Hull came later). There, I studied politics, philosophy and economics, and became secretary of the University Labour Club and chair of the European society. I helped coordinate the ‘Yes’ campaign in the 1975 referendum on Europe, and this cemented a life-long interest in Europe, its benefits, its shortcomings and its evolution.


Email me
Call me
from the UK: 0113 2430554
from elsewhere: +44 113 2430554
Tweet me
Follow @RCorbettMEP

© 2014-2015 Richard Corbett MEP