Council mourns ‘devastating’ loss of Labour councillor

Lambeth council has announced the loss of councillor Liam Jarnecki, who passed away this week following a long battle with cancer. 

Cllr Jarnecki was a Vauxhall ward representative for the Labour Party having first been elected at the last local government elections in May 2022.

He lived in Vauxhall with his husband for more than 15 years, and celebrated his 55th birthday last month.

Cllr Claire Holland, the leader of Lambeth council, said: “Liam’s passing is a devastating loss for us all – it is felt deeply by me personally and the whole of the Lambeth Labour group of councillors. 

“Our thoughts are with his family and friends at this terrible time. 

“That sadness is also deeply felt at Lambeth council where Liam was a valued and respected colleague. He will be dearly missed.

“As tributes to him flood in, it is clear that Liam was seen as a humble, kind, charming, funny and selfless man who was loved and respected by all of us who were fortunate enough to have spent time with him and known him well. 

“More personally, Liam was a massive Eurovision fan, an advocate for our LGBTQ+ community and he loved West Ham United FC, especially Declan Rice – even after he signed for Arsenal – often remarking on his own time playing football and fighting homophobia on the pitches in the 90s.  

“Liam was a trailblazer in his campaigning work for inclusivity in sport and was a pioneer of Stonewall FC.

 “Throughout his battle with cancer, Liam never lost his drive and sense of purpose as a councillor and his dedication to live a life of service for others.

“Becoming a councillor meant a great deal to him, and he embodied the best that anyone could ask for. 

“An unwavering commitment to Vauxhall and Lambeth and our communities, standing up for those in need, and all the while doing it with the charm and humour that endeared him to all who met him. 

“He will be dearly missed by us all.”  

Cllr Jarnecki’s cancer diagnosis was made soon after his election.

During his career he had worked across Whitehall at the Departments of Education and Department for Communities and Local Government, now the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, and in higher education.

The council has confirmed that arrangements for a by-election in Vauxhall ward will be agreed and announced in due course.

Pictured top: Councillor Liam Jarnecki at Vauxhall City Farm (Picture: Lambeth council)

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