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Labour MP quits to become London’s transport deputy

Labour MP Heidi Alexander will step down from her role in parliament to become London’s new deputy mayor for transport.

City Hall revealed the MP for Lewisham East will leave her role to take over from current deputy mayor Val Shawcross, who is retiring this summer.

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan will nominate Ms Alexander to succeed Ms Shawcross as the deputy chair of Transport for London when she begins the deputy mayor role.

Ms Alexander has been MP of Lewisham East since 2010 and was shadow secretary for health from September 2015 until June 2016.

Prior to her role as MP, she was deputy mayor of Lewisham and member of London Councils’ Transport and Environment Committee.

Ms Alexander will now stand down as an MP, with her exit triggering a by-election in the Lewisham East ward.

Ms Shawcross, who is expected to step down in late June, was made deputy mayor for transport in 2016 by Mr Khan following his election victory.

She was crucial in drawing up the mayor’s transport strategy, which was published in February.

The strategy set out plans to improve transport in London over the next 25 years, including the construction of Crossrail 2, the Bakerloo line extension and Rotherhithe-Canary Wharf Crossing.

Ms Shawcross’s decision to retire will bring an end to 18 years at the GLA, with 16 of those as a London Assembly member.

Mr Khan said: “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.”

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