|Known for||Labour politician; Member of Parliament for Bristol North West since the 2017 general election|
|A.K.A.||Darren Paul Jones|
|Birth||13 November 1986, Bristol, United Kingdom|
Darren Paul Jones (born 13 November 1986) is a British Labour politician who was elected as the Member of Parliament (MP) for Bristol North West in the 2017 general election, which he won with 50.7% of the vote. He is currently the convener of the Future Britain Group of Labour politicians.
Born at Southmead Hospital, Jones grew up in Lawrence Weston, Bristol. He attended Avon Primary School and Portway Community School, where he first became involved in community politics in a bid to save his school sixth form from closure.
After sitting his A-levels at the Bristol Post-16 Centre in South Bristol, Jones read for a degree in Human Bioscience at Plymouth University with a particular focus on immunology. At the end of his degree, Jones was elected President of the University of Plymouth Students' Union.
Jones has previously been Chair of Governors at Nova Primary School (formerly Avon Primary), led a mentoring programme with Oasis Academy Brightstowe (formerly Portway School), was a trustee at the Shirehampton Community Action Forum and the North Bristol Advice Centre in Lockleaze.
Jones worked in the National Health Service for several years in Bristol and Plymouth, including at the Southmead and Henbury Family Practice. He served as a governor on the boards of the Plymouth NHS Trust and Plymouth University, and was a weekly newspaper columnist with the Plymouth Herald.
Jones later secured a training contract from Bond Dickinson LLP, securing his place as a trainee solicitor. He completed his legal studies in Bristol at the University of the West of England and the College of Law before qualifying as a telecommunications and technology solicitor. He developed an advisory practice working across the energy and communications sector, and led his firm’s Smart Cities group. Jones also started a successful mentoring programme in Bristol, bringing young people from his old school in Lawrence Weston into the legal profession.
After three years working at Bond Dickinson LLP in Bristol, Jones took a job with BT plc in London. It was during this time that he extended his European law expertise and became increasingly involved in leading EU legislative projects with other communications companies, including the EU wide review of consumer rights law.
During the EU Referendum, Jones was the National Chair of a group of young lawyers campaigning to Remain and is still a board member of U.K. Legal Futures, which brings together leading lawyers to advise politicians and civil servants on the legal questions surrounding Brexit.
Jones first got involved in Labour Party politics as the leader of Labour Students at Plymouth University. He interned for Linda Gilroy MP and Alison Seabeck MP before being selected to be the Labour Party candidate for Torridge & West Devon at the 2010 General Election. He has described Tony Blair as one of his political heroes.
A Co-operative Party and Unite the Union member, Jones served on the national youth committees of both organisations before his election onto the Regional Political Committee of Unite the Union in the South West.
In 2012, Jones won the selection to become the Labour Party candidate for his home constituency of Bristol North West for the 2015 General Election. As a national target seat, the Labour Party fought a high-profile campaign against Conservative incumbent Charlotte Leslie, knocking the Liberal Democrats into third place. Jones campaigned on being the first MP for Bristol North West to have been born and raised there and against alleged Conservative Party plans to introduce charges into the National Health Service.
Following the 2015 General Election, Jones joined the Labour Party leadership campaign of Andy Burnham as the South West coordinator before chairing the successful selection and election campaigns of the Mayor of Bristol, Marvin Rees. Jones then joined the Remain campaign and the Hillary Clinton for President campaign, working in Miami.
Jones is the director of Labour Digital, a digital and technology policy group for Labour Party members and supporters. Jones has a particular interest in technology, the digital economy and the future of work.
Following the announcement of the 2017 General Election, Jones was re-selected as the Labour Party candidate for Bristol North West. He won a surprise victory with a 16.2% swing gaining over 10,000 more votes from the previous General Election and securing 51% of the vote (27,000).
Following his election in June 2017, Jones stated that stopping or mitigating Brexit was his number one priority. Jones sits on the European Scrutiny Committee.
Jones also works on activity related to the digital economy, technology and the environment as a Member of the Science & Technology Select Committee.
Jones is an officer or member of a number of all-party parliamentary groups (known as APPG's), such as the Parliamentary Information, Communications and Technology Forum (“PICTFOR”).
Jones is an officer of the following APPG:
- Consumer Protection (Vice Chair) – To provide a voice for ordinary retail consumers across a range of sectors in the UK economy; to raise awareness of issues, rights and obligations in the field of consumer protection with parliamentarians and the wider public.
- Corporate Governance – To influence and develop understanding of corporate governance through the promotion of a culture based on responsible leadership and investments, thus enabling corporate and their shareholders to enhance prosperity for the benefit of shareholders, economies and society.
- Entrepreneurship – To encourage, support and promote entrepreneurship. It also ensures that Parliament is kept up-to-date on what is needed to create and sustain the most favourable conditions for entrepreneurship.
- Food Waste (Treasurer) – To bring together parliamentarians with an interest in this issue; to facilitate informed discussion with policy-makers, the food industry and environmental and food redistribution organisations; to promote policies which will reduce food waste.
- Smart Cities (Vice Chair) – To engage parliamentarians who share an interest in how the digital revolution can benefit our cities and how the UK can take the lead in seizing a substantial share of the international ‘smart cities’ market.
- Vegetarians & Vegans – To provide a forum for parliamentarians, academics, organisations and interested individuals to meet to promote and raise awareness of vegetarianism and veganism and to discuss issues relating to vegetarian and vegan lifestyles.
Jones is a member of the following APPG:
- AI (Artificial Intelligence) – To explore the impact and implications of artificial intelligence including machine learning.
- Childcare and Early Education – To provide a forum for parliamentarians to constructively examine and debate policy affecting non-maintained childcare and early education providers.
- China – To ensure parliamentarians are kept well informed on China, and to act as a platform for discussions on all issues of importance to the UK-China relationship.
- Disability – To work on all-party basis within Parliament for the interests of all disabled people, their families, friends and carers.
- Health – To disseminate knowledge, generate debate and facilitate engagement with health issues amongst Members of both Houses of Parliament.
- Performers Alliance – To work alongside the unions of the Performers’ Alliance – Equity, the Musicians’ Union and the Writers’ Guild of Great Britain – to raise issues affecting performers and writers across the arts community and to provide a forum for issues relating to arts and culture policy.
- Rule of Law – To promote parliamentary and public discussion on the rule of law as a practical concept.
Jones has spoken on numerous occasions about the need for greater investment in the Bristol North West infrastructure network, championing local rail projects including the Henbury Loop line. Jones has also championed, and raised awareness of, the issues of Modern Slavery, gender inequality and sexual harassment. Jones has also advocated electronic voting in elections to reduce costs and boost turnout, Jones has championed Bristol as a trial area.
Jones is a supporter of Labour Friends of Israel and was one of about 40 MPs to attended a demonstration on 26 March 2018 against Antisemitism in the Labour Party in Parliament Square.
Jones has also campaigned on a wide range of other issues including access to childcare for working parents, crime and policing, against the hostile takeover of GKN by Melrose and rights for EU citizens.
Jones is married to technology entrepreneur Lucy Symons-Jones, who co-founded renewable energy company, Village Infrastructure. Jones has one child and has called for electronic or proxy voting in Parliament during paternity and maternity leave.
Jones is a vegan and plays the jazz saxophone. He is the first Darren to be elected to the House of Commons.