‘Be nice! Rowenna Davis wrote for the CNJ’

rowennaskySOME Labour readers thought the post about Mike Katz loving Hampstead School in West Hampstead and Rowenna Davis being a little more disappointed with its management was a little snippy.

“Be nice. You should be celebrating the fact that Rowenna’s journalistic and campaigning career started on your august chronicle,” one of her gallant supporters messages me. This was, you’ll understand, a sarcky way of saying the Camden New Journal.

So apologies for any felt snippiness, of course none was meant. Her teenage protest at the start of the Iraq war while a student at Hampstead is something she should always be proud of. Inspiring stuff, as the bombs began to fall, she led the Hands Up For Peace protest the Parliament while others were down the chip shop.

In a poetic switcharoo, the Daily Mirror quotes her as saying at the start of the war: “We are raising our hands in defiance to Tony Blair. He says he is acting in the interests of democracy. But I bet Saddam wouldn’t mind operating the kind of democracy in place here, where the PM takes a momentous decision without the backing of his people.”

And, yes, yes indeed, one of Rowenna’s earliest articles was for the Camden New Journal back in 2003 when she had just left Hampstead for her degree course in Oxford. It’s still up on the paper’s website. Seeeeee:

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A feisty enough comment writer even then, she was urging everybody to buy more Fairtrade products, revealing: “Three years ago I was given a lesson in Fairtrade at my school and I haven’t had a bar of chocolate without the Fairtrade label since.” There you go, when she’s an MP, a pap can make some money with the Sunday tabs if they can score a picture of her slyly eating a forbidden Nestle Kit Kat.

There’s something to be said for a teenager worried about Costa Rican coffee farmers, though, when others her age were buying Justin Timberlake records. Now, she’s standing for Parliament in Southampton, at least the picture in the last post, drinking up the New Journal’s front page, shows she hasn’t forgotten us back in Camden.

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