A FORMER Stroud MEP is one of two on the shortlist for Labour's next parliamentary candidate in the Stroud constituency. 

This comes as it was revealed on Tuesday that Stroud District Council leader Doina Cornell was removed from the longlist. 

The decision has proved controversial, with left-wing organisation Momentum calling it an 'anti-democratic stitch-up from Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer. 

Clare Moody - who was born and brought up in the Cotswolds - is one of two candidates on the final shortlist, with the other being Simon Opher. 

Currently co-CEO of human rights and equality charity Equally Ours, Ms Moody also worked for Gordon Brown during his time as Prime Minister and spent 20 years working in the trade union movement.

In 2015 she launched David Drew’s election campaign, and in the last General Election convinced former Conservative MEP Julie Girling to publicly endorse the-then Stroud MP.

Speaking after the shortlist for the selection was announced, Clare said:

“As a life-long campaigner, trade unionist, and champion for social justice, I know I’m the right person to take on the current Conservative MP, Siobhan Baillie – and I’d relish the opportunity to do so.

"David Drew set a high standard as a dedicated constituency MP and I will follow that example.

“If we are to have any chance of evicting Boris Johnson from Downing Street and electing a Labour Government, we must win in Stroud. 

"I’ve spent my life standing up for others. 

"I have the skills, qualities and conviction to make the positive case for Labour to voters across the whole constituency and I’m ready to be our next MP.

Ms Moody has already attracted significant support from across the local party, as well as from the GMB and UNISON trade unions.

Raj Sharma, who lives in Stroud, said:

“I’m backing Clare because her policy knowledge is second to none. From the climate emergency to international affairs, she really knows her stuff and can take the fight to Siobhan Baillie.”

Olga Gibbons, from Stonehouse, said:

“We need someone experienced in parliamentary procedure and who is not afraid to speak her own mind.

"Someone with integrity who passionately believes in making life better for the people in the constituency. I feel that Clare Moody encompasses all this which is why I’m backing her to be our Labour candidate.”

Her campaign website is available to view at www.claremoody.com, followed on Twitter at @ClareMoodySW, or Facebook on “Clare Moody for Stroud

"Representing Stroud as its MEP was a great privilege, I’ve always loved campaigning here," said Ms Moody.