Emma Dent Coad

Last updated on 24 September 2017

Emma Dent Coad (born 15 November 1954)[1] is a British Labour Party politician. She has been the Member of Parliament (MP) for the Kensington constituency since the 2017 general election.

Early life and education

Dent Coad was born in Chelsea, London, the youngest of six children. Her father was a professor of medicine with Spanish roots, and her mother a vicar's daughter who converted to Catholicism to marry him.[2] She went to Sacred Heart High School, a convent school in Hammersmith, London.[2][3] She graduated from the Royal College of Art with an MA in History of Design in 1992.[4]

She has lived in North Kensington since 1986.[5]

Dent Coad has written or contributed to a number of books on architecture and design, including on Javier Mariscal.[6] She is studying for a PhD at the University of Liverpool School of Architecture on "Constructing Modern Spain: Architecture, Politics and Ideology under Franco, 1939-1975",[7] which she has put on hold for a period on being elected.[8]

Political career

Dent Coad was elected to Conservative-controlled Kensington and Chelsea London Borough Council in 2006, representing Golborne ward.[9] She served as a council-appointed board member of Kensington and Chelsea TMO, the tenant management organisation which manages the council's housing stock, from 27 June 2008 to 31 October 2012.[10][11][12] In 2013/4 she was a member of the council's Housing and Property Scrutiny Committee.[13][14] She has been a member of the council's Planning Applications Committee since May 2013, and a member of the main Planning Committee since June 2014.[15] She is a member of the London Fire and Emergency Planning Authority.[16]

Dent Coad was elected the Member of Parliament (MP) for Kensington in the 2017 general election when she defeated the Conservative MP Victoria Borwick with a majority of 20, overturning a 7,020 majority.[17] The announcement was made at around 9 pm on 9 June 2017, after three recounts, hours after all other constituencies.[18] Dent Coad has attributed her election victory to dissatisfaction over the gentrification of the borough where, she claims, rich people are increasingly moving in and poor people get poorer. Dent Coad maintains poor people are forced out of the area to make way for building of luxury properties. Dent Coad maintains developers do not care about people and luxury developments are often second homes or are left empty while poor people lose their homes and are forced to unsuitable places or out of the area. Dent Coad maintains too many poor people complain about bad health.[19]

On 29 June 2017 she was one of only two members of the new intake of Labour MPs to vote against the party whip for an amendment to the Queen's Speech calling for the UK's continued membership of the Single Market and the Customs Union following Brexit.[20]

Grenfell Tower fire

In June 2017, Dent Coad blamed the Kensington and Chelsea council for failings which led to the Grenfell Tower fire.[21] Dent Coad considers the fire an ‘entirely preventable’ tragedy. Dent Coad said, “I can’t help thinking that poor quality materials and construction standards may have played a part in this hideous and unforgivable event.” Dent Coad links the council's intention to redevelop the area to the tragedy, she said, “The council want to develop this area full of social housing, and in order to enable that they have prettified a building that they felt was ugly ... The idea that that has led to this horrendous tragedy is just unthinkable.” She plans to fight to get permanent new homes in the area for victims of the trajedy rather than, 'some mucky bedsit'. Dent Coad added, “People are very afraid of what is going to happen next. They need to be kept within Kensington. The fear I was hearing yesterday was ‘they’re going to send us to Peterborough or to Hastings’, all the other places that the council has tried to send them before. People want to stay near their networks where their children go to school, where their families are. People are very angry.”[21] Poverty in Kensington and the fire were the subjects of her maiden speech in the Commons on 22 June.[22]

On 4 July 2017 Dent Coad said that residents had no confidence in Sir Martin Moore-Bick, describing him as "a technocrat" who lacked "credibility". She argued that he should not lead the Grenfell Tower Fire Inquiry.[23]

Dent Coad supports a move to get all the leaders of Kensington and Chelsea London Borough Council to resign so that there can be fresh elections.[24]


  1. ^ "Emma Dent Coad MP". myparliament.info. MyParliament. Retrieved 10 August 2017.
  2. ^ a b Addley, Esther (30 June 2017). "Kensington MP Emma Dent Coad on Grenfell: ‘Safety shouldn’t be an aspiration’ | UK news". The Guardian. Retrieved 5 July 2017.
  3. ^ "Councillors". kensingtonlabour.com. Kensington Labour.
  4. ^ Aouf, Rima Sabina (12 June 2017). "First Labour MP in London's Kensington is a design writer who plans to fight gentrification". Dezeen. Retrieved 17 July 2017.
  5. ^ "Our parliamentary candidate for Kensington". kensingtonlabour.com. Kensington Labour. Retrieved 17 June 2017.
  6. ^ Dent Coad, Emma (1991). Javier Mariscal: designing the new Spain. London New York: Fourth Estate and Wordsearch Rizzoli. ISBN 9780847813575.
  7. ^ "Current PhD Students". liverpool.ac.uk. School of Architecture, University of Liverpool.
  8. ^ The Daily Politics, BBC, 13 June 2017
  9. ^ "Welcome to Golborne Ward". rbkc.gov.uk. Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea. Retrieved 10 June 2017.
  10. ^ "KCTMO AGM papers August 2012" (PDF). Retrieved 15 June 2017.
  11. ^ "KCTMO Financial statements for year end 31st March 2013" (PDF). Retrieved 14 June 2017.
  12. ^ "Emma Dent Coad – Personal appointments". Companies House. Retrieved 21 June 2017.
  13. ^ "RKBC Housing and Property Scrutiny Committee membership". rbkc.gov.uk. Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea. Retrieved 16 June 2017.
  14. ^ Razaq, Rashid (16 June 2017). "Labour's new Kensington MP was on housing scrutiny committee". London Evening Standard. Retrieved 16 June 2017.
  15. ^ "Members". rbkc.gov.uk. Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea. Retrieved 5 July 2017.
  16. ^ "Councillor Emma Dent Coad". moderngov.london-fire.gov.uk. London Fire Brigade. Retrieved 10 June 2017.
  17. ^ Slawson, Nicola (9 June 2017). "Labour rounds off remarkable election with narrow victory in Kensington". The Guardian. Retrieved 10 June 2017.
  18. ^ Simpson, Fiona (9 June 2017). "General Election 2017: Labour's Emma Dent Coad wins Kensington seat after THIRD recount". London Evening Standard. Retrieved 9 June 2017.
  19. ^ Booth, Robert (11 June 2017). "Kensington's first Labour MP vows to tackle area's inequality". The Guardian. Retrieved 30 June 2017.
  20. ^ Mortimer, Caroline (29 June 2017). "Labour's Brexit rebellion: All the MPs who defied Jeremy Corbyn over Single Market membership". The Independent. Retrieved 10 July 2017.
  21. ^ a b Gentleman, Amelia (15 June 2017). "'Unforgivable': local Labour MP vents fury over Grenfell Tower fire". The Guardian. Retrieved 16 June 2017.
  22. ^ Details:
  23. ^ "Grenfell fire: MP calls for inquiry chairman to quit". BBC news. 4 July 2017. Retrieved 4 July 2017.
  24. ^ "Grenfell Tower fire: New council leader heckled by public". BBC news. 19 July 2017. Retrieved 20 July 2017.

External links

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Victoria Borwick
Member of Parliament
for Kensington


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