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Cicero Group had the pleasure of hosting an event for Labour in the City, welcoming Ed Balls, former Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer.

The event provided an opportunity for Mr Balls to outline his views on the state of the Labour party and Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership and to reflect on a tumultuous year in politics. With the session taking place only days after the US Presidential election, a key theme was the similarity of circumstances leading to surprising Brexit and Trump victories.

In analysing the political events of the year, Mr Balls discussed voter demographics and the differences between voters from urban and rural areas. He noted this was key in gaining an understanding of voting behaviour in both Britain and the US, arguing that Labour needs to find a way to reconnect with the concerns of rural Brexit voters.

Mr Balls also shared some more personal and entertaining anecdotes of his time in Government, most notably a close encounter on a Concorde flight with Gordon Brown when the plane malfunctioned.

Talking about his life after leaving politics he shared some thoughts on his experience as a contestant on ‘Strictly Come Dancing’ and what the programme has taught him. He said that even with his many years in the public eye, he had not been prepared for the kind of confidence needed on the dance floor. Used to playing the role of an energetic politician on the campaign trail, Strictly has taught him to play different roles depending on the weeks’ dance.

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