A “DIEHARD” Liverpool fan born into a “stalwart” Labour family, Steve Rotheram is a red through and through.
He was born in Knowsley, Merseyside, has lived all of his adult life in the Liverpool Walton constituency he now represents and counts Anfield legend Jamie Carragher among his friends.
The former Liverpool and England centre back even made a guest appearance at his mayoral campaign launch.
Rotheram’s credentials to represent the city are without question and the personal ambition that has seen him win the role was evident early on.
He began his professional life as an apprentice bricklayer and had formed his own company at just 22. While working in construction, he pursued qualifications at college before becoming a full-time student.
He then gained a masters degree in urban renaissance while working at the Learning and Skills Council.
These experiences lay behind one of four headline manifesto pledges — to give “true parity between academic and technical training.”
Rotheram also revealed that, away from politics, he relaxes by keeping up his construction skills.
He became a Labour councillor in 2002, following in the footsteps of his father, a forklift truck driver who represented the party in Kirkby throughout the 1970s.
The mayoral candidate became the MP for Liverpool Walton in 2010 and retained it with the biggest majority of any seat in 2015. The future of the seat itself though could be threatened by the forthcoming review of constituency boundaries, which is likely to have a disproportionate effect on Labour constituencies.
Rotheram has stayed true to his roots in Parliament, campaigning for justice for the families of the Hillsborough victims and the Shrewsbury pickets.
Rotheram was actually at Hillsborough on the day of the disaster and had been due to sit at the Leppings Lane end — where fans were crushed 15 minutes before kick-off — but swapped his ticket at the last minute.
He led Andy Burnham’s campaign for the Labour leadership in 2015, but has since served Jeremy Corbyn as his private parliamentary secretary.