Lucy Powell was first elected as the Labour Party MP for Manchester Central in a 2012 by-election, being reelected in 2019 with a majority of 29,089.
As its name suggests, the Manchester Central constituency covers the city centre of Manchester around Deansgate, as well as the communities of Hulme, Ancoats, Moston, and Openshaw. This part of Manchester is a very safe Labour area which has supported the party continuously since the Second World War. Even during the last decade when the Conservatives have been the dominant party at Westminster, Labour has polled close to three quarters of the vote here. The University of Manchester is found in this constituency, and there is a very high proportion of students living here.
Powell was appointed Shadow Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport in November 2021. She served in the Shadow Cabinet as the Shadow Secretary of State for Housing in 2021, having been the Shadow Minister for Business and Consumers between 2020 and 2021.
Powell previously served as the Shadow Secretary of State for Education between 2015 and 2016. She resigned from the Shadow Cabinet in 2016 in protest at Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership.
Powell supported Owen Smith in his 2016 challenge to Jeremy Corbyn for the Labour leadership.
Born in Manchester in 1974, Lucy Powell studied Chemistry at Somerville College (also the college of Shirley Williams and Margaret Thatcher) at Oxford University, and then at King’s College London.
Powell is something of a career politician. Before entering parliament, she worked for the pro EU Pressure Group Britain in Europe, as well as for the UK government, NESTA. Powell is politically close to the former Labour leader, Ed Miliband. She served as his chief of staff between 2010 and 2012, before being elected to Westminster.
Lucy Powell is Vice Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Groups on Social Mobility; Conception to Age Two; Greater Manchester; Literacy; and Reuniting Post Brexit.
Powell supports Manchester City Football Club.