The Reverend and the Makers of Labour’s Sheffield Hallam candidate

It’s not often you hear an artist with a top-ten selling single trying to convince a painter and decorator of the difference between Tony Blair and Jeremy Corbyn, even in election season. However if you’d have walked down Crookes high street earlier, you would have found Reverend and the Makers’ Jon McClure doing just that.

McClure was one of a few famous figures from Sheffield’s musical past in town supporting Labour’s candidate for Sheffield Hallam, Jared O’Mara along with Heaven 17’s keyboard player Martyn Ware and former Harrisons bassist Ashley Birch.

O’Mara will only be heartened by the reaction from the electorate, many telling canvassers they had already voted for him, although one brave pensioner when offered a leaflet by the towering McClure responded: “No thanks, I’ve got more than one brain cell.”

30-year-old Ashley Birch who is currently studying at the University of Sheffield said: “I’ve known Jared for years since he was a music journalist. It is a pleasure to be able to vote for him and campaign for him.”

Best known for the Reverend and the Maker’s hit ‘Heavyweight Champion of the World,’ McClure was lending his hand to O’Mara’s campaign before his gig alongside Milburn at the Don Valley bowl tonight.

“I think Jared would be a great MP for Sheffield Hallam, I’ve known him since he was 18 months old and went to nursery school with him. From your local MP you want someone who means what they’re saying, deep within themselves and Jared’s exactly that.”

With less than a week until polling day, O’Mara who is also the co-founder of Sheffield music venue West Street Live was thrilled with the support from his friends.

He told South Yorkshire Briefing: “I’m absolutely thrilled that Martyn has come up from London, Ashley has come away from studying and John has taken time aside from his gig tonight. The help of party members generally has been fantastic, when they have work to do. We’re hopeful of a good result next week.”