Page last updated at 18:49 GMT, Monday, 24 May 2010 19:49 UK

John Prescott wants to be next Labour Party treasurer

John Prescott
Mr Prescott says he travelled 5,000 miles during the election campaign

Former Deputy Prime Minister John Prescott has said he wants to be the next Labour Party treasurer.

Mr Prescott, 71, who stepped down as an MP at the general election, said party members had persuaded him to stand.

He told the BBC the job was about "getting the money in" and increasing membership and pledged to create a "vibrant mass membership party".

The current treasurer, Jack Dromey, became MP for Birmingham Erdington at the general election.

The position is an elected role - and is a position on Labour's ruling National Executive Committee.

Mr Prescott was deputy PM for 10 years and stepped down in 2007, when Tony Blair resigned as prime minister.

'Stable footing'

He announced his campaign to be party treasurer on the Twitter micro-blogging site and urged Labour to make better use of the internet as a communication tool.

He said he would work closely with the party leader - who will also be announced at the Labour conference in September - and the general secretary to help put Labour "on a stable financial footing" and build members with the "active support and engagement of unions and affiliated organisations".

Mr Prescott told the BBC Politics Show for Yorkshire and Lincolnshire: "The treasurer's role is about doing a number of things, getting the money in... continue to make sure membership grows."

He said his 5,000 mile battle-bus trip during the election campaign had shown him how important it was for key players like MPs and constituency parties to be active, particularly in marginal seats.

He said "too often" Labour had felt "we have got no money so we can't do anything - and we didn't really. I don't think we campaigned on our record much at all."

He said his message, when money was tight, was: "You had better cut your cloth, if you haven't got as much money as you had before, you get a campaign to do it."

In some areas organisation was very good, in others it was "very bad" and he said he wanted to "play my part" in improving it.

"It will be a rough ride, but I would like to do it," he said.

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