Labour to "lock in" long term reform

A third term of Labour government will press ahead with a more radical, more controversial reform package, the party's election chief will say today.

Speaking in the opening keynote address at the Fabian Society, in an event called the Unfinished Revolution, former Health Secretary Alan Milburn is expected to say radical reforms inevitably court controversy and under New Labour and Tony Blair they will "go on and on".

"Reform is not a process that starts one day and ends the next. It must go on and on," he will say.

"When we have backed reform, the public have backed us. When we have turned our back on reform, the public have turned their back on us."

He will say that a historic third term of Labour government will engender change that "locks in progress not just for this generation but for generations to come."

He will entreat supporters to research new solutions to smash the "glass ceiling on opportunity".

"In our first two terms we have raised it. In our third term we have to break it," he will say.

The MP for Darlington - returned to Cabinet to pen Labour's next manifesto - is expected to outline elements of concrete policy to entice "progressive but disillusioned" rank-and-file elements within the party.

Blairite Mr Milburn is expected to praise Gordon Brown for his radical economic reforms, flagging up how the Chancellor handed independence to the Bank of England soon after taking office in 1997.

"Reform is not about undermining our values, it is the way of realising them," he will say.

Mr Milburn is also expected to stress that, in a third term of office, New Labour will "govern on its own terms", offering prosperity and opportunity for all.

International Development Secretary Hilary Benn and Culture Secretary Tessa Jowell are also expected to speak at the event, alongside former Transport Secretary, Stephen Byers, former Education Secretary Estelle Morris, Oona King, the Labour MP for Bethnal Green & Bow and Gordon Brown's former advisor Ed Balls.