LEADERSHIP requires more than to just hold a position of power.

For it to be a position of real authority, people must respect the leader and share in his or her vision and values.

There is no more testing position than that of Prime Minister but we are fortunate to have a constitutional monarchy.

Her Majesty, the Queen, is our Head of State and she symbolises and represents the people of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. In comparison, the Prime Minister is considered to be a more humble figure whether or not the person holding the position agrees.

The Prime Minister came close to losing a confidence vote held amongst Conservative MPs which ought to be taken rather seriously.

We will see, over the coming weeks, what this humbling experience will mean in terms of any new direction in policy but, more importantly, on delivery.

Oddly enough, few would claim that confidence amongst Labour MPs in their leader is any higher than that enjoyed by the Prime Minister. Perhaps this is one of the key differences between the two main political parties in that the Conservatives are prepared to take difficult decisions whilst Labour dodge them for as long as possible.

James Grundy MP led the opposition to the HS2 Golborne spur being built.

It was always clear, from the start, that this £3bn waste of money would contribute nothing of value to the local area but would create massive problems. As he says, he stopped the spur and is delivering the much needed Golborne railway station which is an achievement to be proud of in such a short time when his predecessors never managed it.

After having little news on the railways for years there seems to be an abundance now but it is not all good. The union barons are threatening to abuse their power and deliver a crushing blow to our economic recovery as we continue to struggle out of the pandemic era.

You, the taxpayer, have subsidised the railways for decades and handed over billions more during the Covid-19 lockdowns. This kept the system running and the rail workers in employment. This is what solidarity is about – in the tough times we will look after you and you will look after us.

Unfortunately, the unions are promising a rolling series of strikes just as children are doing their school exams and businesses are returning to normal. It has been tough for many workers over the last two years and this is when we need solidarity most.

What makes it even worse is that leading Labour figures, looking at Sir Kier Starmer’s precarious position, are lining up with the unions as they threaten to strike. They seem to value the unions backing of their leadership ambitions above essential services that we all depend upon.

It makes me question Labour’s vision and values.