#MoreInCommon free community fun day poster, 2016
This poster was for one of a series of events organised across the country and led by Hope Not Hate, one of the charities that benefited from the Jo Cox Fund. It was the first event arranged by the group of local volunteers who went on to form the More in Common, Batley & Spen group. Jo’s family were also heavily involved in planning the day and her sister Kim spoke at the event.
Courtesy of Jo Cox’s family
Les Misérables School Edition poster, 2017
Les Misérables was Jo’s favourite musical. This production was staged by the Batley & Spen Youth Theatre Company and included a cast of 100 young people from the local area. The company was formed in 2017, in memory Jo Cox and all she believed in.
Courtesy of Jo Cox’s family
The Great Get Together, Portobello, Edinburgh, 2017
The Jo Cox Foundation
In September 2016, Jo’s friends and family established The Jo Cox Foundation to honour her memory and spread her ‘More in Common’ message.
The following year the Foundation organised the first Great Get Together. It took place on the first anniversary of Jo’s murder. People from across the country came together to celebrate their communities. The event proved to be a huge success with over 10 million people taking part. The Great Get Together has become an annual event and 2019 saw 11,000 events held across the UK.
Iftar event, Batley, 2017
This event is organised by More in Common, Batley & Spen and takes place as part of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. It brings together all sections of the community for an open air get together which includes breaking the fast when the sun goes down.
Building a fairer world
As well as working locally and nationally, the Foundation works internationally too, inspiring and championing the humanitarian work and campaigns that were so important to Jo.
In February 2017, the Foundation supported the completion of ‘The Cost of Doing Nothing Report’. Jo had been working on this report before her death with Conservative Party MP Tom Tugendhat, who would go on to finish it with Labour Party MP Alison McGovern. The report made a case for action to protect civilians from atrocities in conflicts around the world. It received strong cross party support.
‘Combatting loneliness one conversation at a time’ report, 2017
Continuing the work Jo started on loneliness whilst an MP, this report was published at the end of 2017. Led by Rachel Reeves MP and Seema Kennedy MP, it called for national leadership and a clear structured approach to the issue. By the start of 2018, Tracey Crouch MP was appointed as the world’s first minister for loneliness.
A better public life
In January 2019, the Foundation started a national conversation around intimidation in public life following increasing levels of abuse towards MPs. They called for greater civility, respect and compassion in national discourse. Later in May, the Foundation started work with the committee on standards in public life to convene the first joint standard of conduct for political parties.
Step Into The Future event, 2019
This event is organised by More in Common, Batley & Spen and the BBEST (Birstall and Batley Excellence in Schools Together) hub. It brings together over 1000 pupils from schools across the region on a march through Batley town centre and up to the Batley Bulldogs rugby league ground where they take part in activities which embody the ‘More in Common’ ethos.
Gordon, Jean and Kim Leadbeater at the Jo Cox Community Wood, Spen Valley, 2020
Spen Valley Civic Society created the community wood in 2019 in Jo’s memory. Jo’s family are pictured here wearing t-shirts for the Jo Cox Way bike ride, which was set up in the Summer of 2016 by a North Yorkshire businessman Sarfraz Mian. The bike ride now takes place every year. In 2018, Jo’s sister Kim did the full 280 mile ride from West Yorkshire to London. Sadly, due to lockdown the event could not take place in 2020, but Kim is hoping to join over 50 cyclists to do it again in July 2021.