Alison Jane Seabeck (née Ward) (born 20 January 1954) is an English Labour Party politician and shadow Minister under the Shadow Secretary of State for Defence. She was previously the shadow Housing Minister. She was the Member of Parliament (MP) for Plymouth Devonport from 2005 until 2010 when she won the new seat of Plymouth Moor View.


 [hide*1 Early life

Early life[edit]Edit

Seabeck went to Harold Hill Grammar School (became Upper Bedfords Park School in 1973 then closed down) on Appleby Drive in Harold Hill in London. She studied at the North East London Polytechnic (now the University of East London) in Stratford. Seabeck was a member of the MSF (now Amicus), and whilst working at the House of Commons became the secretary of the South Thames Community Branch. She is also a member of the feminist Fawcett Society and the Labour Women's Network.[1]

Political career[edit]Edit

Seabeck was picked for the Plymouth Devonport seat from an all-women shortlist.[2] As a candidate in 2005, Seabeck was asked by the local paper: "What is a Janner?" The flustered candidate reportedly replied: "I don't know. You're not going to print this, are you?"

They did. The answer is a "Plymothian".

Seabeck was elected at the 2005 general election with a majority of 8,103, replacing David Jamieson. She served as a Government Whip attached to the Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform from 2007 to 2008.[citation needed]

In the 2010 general election Seabeck successfully held her seat in Plymouth Moor View.[3]

On October 11, 2010, Seabeck was appointed Shadow Housing Minister,[4] working with Caroline Flint, the then shadow secretary for Communities and Local Government. On 7 October 2011, she was appointed Shadow Defence Minister[4] during Ed Miliband's reshuffle.

In December 2010 it was revealed that Seabeck was under investigation by the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards in relation to declaration of member's interests.[5][6]

She was also a member of the Public Bill Committee for the Defence Reform Act 2014[7]

Personal life[edit]Edit

She married her former husband Denis in 1975 and they have two daughters.[1] She is the wife of Nick Raynsford MP, for whom she worked as researcher before entering Parliament. Her father was the former Labour MP for PeterboroughMichael Ward.[8]

Seabeck hired her daughter to work as an assistant in Parliament.

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