The Parliamentary Rugby League Group is to pay tribute to Jo Cox at Batley this Sunday after her tragic death last week.
Jo was a member of the group, and, as MP for one of the town’s most synonymous with the game in the UK, she was very supportive of her local club Batley Bulldogs – the first club to lift the Challenge Cup in 1897. In recent weeks she had been supporting and championing Batley Bulldogs Girls, who placed a flag with tributes at the foot of the statue of Joseph Priestley, near to where Jo was attacked.
Members of the Group will pay tribute to her at Batley’s next home game against local rivals Dewsbury this Sunday 26th June. Along with representatives from both clubs, members will lay flowers on the pitch prior to kick off, before a minutes silence is observed. Members will be wearing Batley shirts with ‘Jo Cox’ on the back, as a mark of respect.
Group Chair and Member of Parliament for Leeds North West, Greg Mulholland MP said: “The Parliamentary Rugby League Group wish to pay tribute to Jo Cox MP and it is very appropriate that we will do so at Jo’s local club, Batley Bulldogs, before their match against local rivals Dewsbury Rams, joining the two clubs, supporters and many others from the Rugby League family.
“As well as being a great servant to her constituency and Batley and Spen and a formidable campaigner for justice, Jo was also a member of the Parliamentary Rugby League Group and supported Rugby League, notably promoting and assisting women and girls Rugby League in Batley. We share the pain of Batley Bulldogs Girls who have paid tribute to Jo and all those involved in Rugby League locally who mourn her loss. The thoughts and prayers of the Parliamentary Rugby League Group are with her family and friends; she will be desperately missed but never forgotten.”
Also attending on behalf of the Group will be Vice-Chair Paula Sherriff MP, Member of Parliament for Dewsbury. She commented “Jo was a dedicated MP, a friend and a great colleague. She was committed to making the world a better place for local people in her constituency of Batley and Spen and for people in need across the globe. Everyone is struggling to come to terms with her loss, but I am glad to be able to pay tribute to her at the match on Sunday with my colleagues.”
Vice-Chair and Member of Parliament for Colne Valley, Jason McCartney, added “Jo was a tireless, passionate MP, and was respected by Members on all sides of the House. She was always a pleasure to work with, and I will miss her dearly. Jo was always supportive of Rugby League in Batley, and it is fitting that members of the group can pay tribute to her at the game on Sunday.”