Angela Rayner has revealed she is sent Little Britain and Shameless memes after appearing on TV.
The Labour deputy leader gave an insight into the ‘abuse’ she receives in an interview with British Vogue.
Ms Rayner said her team ‘dreads’ her making high-profile interventions because her distinctive Mancunian tones mean she is branded ‘thick as mince’.
The MP’s two younger sons also require security to walk to school after getting threats.
The scale of the backlash was laid bare in her chat with the fashion bible, which was accompanied by a glossy photoshoot.
Labour deputy leader Angela Rayner gave an insight into the ‘abuse’ she receives in an interview with British Vogue
The scale of the backlash was laid bare in Ms Rayner’s chat with the fashion bible, which was accompanied by a glossy photoshoot
The December issue of British Vogue is available via digital download and on newsstands from today
Ms Rayner said: ‘I get called thick as mince. I get memes of Little Britain and Shameless, ones that portray me as “lower class”.
‘My team dread it when I’ve been on television or PMQs. I get compliments but a huge amount of abuse. It’s become part of the job.’
As well as threats to herself, Ms Rayner said her teenage children had also been victims and needed regular security.
‘My children don’t walk to school like normal children,’ she said.
The Labour frontbencher spoke about her impoverished childhood in Stockport, Greater Manchester, where she became carer for her bipolar mother aged just six.
‘From the age of six, I was more articulate than my mum,’ she said.
‘We swapped roles. I was her carer. It’s not like there’s an interview. You just take it on. That was normality to me.’
Ms Rayner was careful to play down persistent signs of tensions with Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer, while admitting they are ‘very different’.
‘I think we complement each other because we’re very different. If I was just, “Yes, everything you say is wonderful”, you wouldn’t get feedback. Same with him to me,’ she said.
‘Our leadership has evolved, like any team when you’re thrown together. Whatever the office politics is like… we understand each other now.’
Ms Rayner added: ‘One of the first meetings we ever had was when [Boris Johnson] was seriously ill with Covid.
‘Keir discussed with me how I’d lead if he fell ill. That really told me he respected my position.’
The Ashton-under-Lyne MP also discussed her insomnia, saying she only managed to get four or five hours sleep a night – but had adjusted her diary so she did not have early morning commitments.
‘I get about four to five hours a night, sometimes less. I’ve adjusted my diary so I don’t have early mornings. You have to adapt,’ she said.
- See the full feature in the December issue of British Vogue, available via digital download and on newsstands from today.