Labour MP stands down to become London’s new deputy mayor for transport

Heidi Alexander pictured with London mayor Sadiq Khan.

Labour MP Heidi Alexander is to step down from her role as member of parliament for Lewisham East to become London’s new deputy mayor for transport.

Alexander’s new role, to which she was appointed by London mayor Sadiq Khan, will see her £77,000 a year MP’s salary rise to £127,000 as the London mayor’s transport chief. She replaces current deputy mayor Val Shawcross who is retiring after 18 years at the GLA.  

Khan paid tribute to Shawcross for her exceptional service to Londoners, as leader of Croydon Council, then as a London Assembly member for 16 years, including eight years as chair of the London Fire and Emergency Planning Authority, and then as deputy mayor for transport since 2016. He recognised the deep expertise she has brought to the Mayor’s office and the GLA overseeing London’s transport network.

Alexander has been MP for Lewisham East since 2010, and was previously a shadow secretary for health. In due course the mayor is expected to nominate her to succeed Shawcross as the deputy chair of transport for London.

Commenting on Alexander’s move to the GLA, Khan said: “I’m delighted that Heidi Alexander has agreed to become our new deputy mayor for transport. Heidi knows this city inside-out, and her work both as shadow health secretary and campaigning over the best Brexit deal has demonstrated the terrific job she will do as part of my team standing up for London.  

“Heidi is respected across the political divide as a parliamentarian and campaigner, and Londoners can be confident she will ensure we deliver our ambitious plans to transform London’s transport network over the coming years.” 

Commenting on her new role, Alexander said: “I am really excited to be joining Sadiq and the team at City Hall. Val is going to be a hard act to follow but I can't wait to get started. After eight years as the member of Parliament for Lewisham East and six years as a local councillor, I know just how important it is we ensure everyone has access to a high-quality and affordable public transport network, with safe cycling routes across the capital. London is a fantastic city. I know Sadiq wants its transport system to be the envy of the world and I am looking forward to playing my part in making that happen.”

Shawcross is expected to step down from her role in late June and Alexander’s exit as an MP will trigger a by-election in the safe Labour seat of Lewisham East.

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