I for one am mightily relieved that Labour now have someone in charge who looks credible and authoritative. I say this as a citizen and as a Liberal Democrat. As a citizen... having a weak opposition party is in no one's interest. It opens up space for a weak government. We've seen that happen in recent years and are living with the consequences now. There is no getting away from it, under FPTP Labour are the alternative government. We should all care about what sort of government they might form. And Starmer is clearly a big improvement. Corbyn, the lifelong ...

Posted by Chris Pallet on Liberal Democrat Voice | Mute

 

Last week I featured how Liberal Democrats in Hull and Camden are helping residents in their areas through coronavirus. Today, it's Eastbourne, one of the local parties that has been making the most phone calls in the last week: A new community call centre has been launched in Eastbourne to support elderly people forced to shield themselves during the coronavirus pandemic... The community call centre is operated remotely by Eastbourne Liberal Democrat party councillors and volunteers. It has already smashed its target of reaching 1,000 elderly residents across town, and is now working to provide support to 5,000. Josh Babarinde, ...

Posted by Mark Pack on Mark Pack | Mute

I blogged a couple of weeks ago about the seeming demise of one of Melling's unique sandstone built bus shelters – The one close to the Pear Tree Pub on Prescott Road. Here's a link to that posting:- Moving on and on one of my solo fitness cycle rides during our lock-down a couple of days ago I saw this:- This is the bench right next to the other Prescot Road sandstone bus shelter that's near the junction with Cunscough Lane. You can't see the shelter in this shot but this is it:- A view from inside the shelter ...

Posted by Cllr. Tony Robertson on Sefton Focus | Mute
Mon 6th
10:52

Oblivion: The LibDems

In the English collective memory Covid-19 and Brexit are pre-eminent. Further away, we have had Suez and Dunkirk. Etched deeper into the English psyche is the Somme and Gallipoli. In the mists of time, buccaneering adventurism marked the first Elizabethan age which set the beginnings of an Empire. This has entrenched the view that this plucky little offshore island can see off all-comers with a game of bowls and a hopeless cavalry charge. Meanwhile, back in the real world the evidence paints a very different narrative! Let's just recall that Henry VIII had just severed English ties with the predominant ...

Posted by Paul Fisher on Liberal Democrat Voice | Mute

The BBC report that National Domestic Abuse helpline has seen a 25% increase in calls and online requests for help since the lockdown. Refuge, the charity which runs the helpline has said that it received hundreds more calls last week compared to two weeks earlier: Campaigners have warned the restrictions could heighten domestic tensions and cut off escape routes. The charity said pressure on other services and awareness campaigns could have also led to the increase. One woman, who fled her abuser a few days ago, told the BBC life had become intolerable since the lockdown started. 'Tara', who asked ...

Posted by Peter Black on Peter Black | Mute

Yesterday, the new leader of the Labour Party – and how good does it feel to say that, regardless of what you think of Starmer? – made his initial shadow cabinet picks. They were just the top jobs but they still give us some indication of what Starmer's leadership is going to be like, at least the first stage of it. It gave me the impression of someone who knows he has the left of the party waiting to jump down his throat and call him a Lib Dem as quickly as they can and is looking to avoid this ...

Posted by Nick on nicktyrone.com | Mute
Mon 6th
09:50

A War with COVID19?

On both sides of the Atlantic, the rhetoric around the fight against the Coronavirus has become increasingly bellicose. Having initially tried to pass the whole thing off as a "Democrat hoax" President Donald Trump has now switched to wartime mode, though he can't resist the temptation to take swipes at domestic political rivals, such as [...]

Posted by jonathanfryer on Jonathan Fryer | Mute

In response to the issuing of regulations by the Government giving details of new ways of working by councils to keep the democratic process intact, I have written to the City Solicitor, Chief Executive and Labour, Green and Liberal Leaders ... Continue reading →

Posted by richardkemp on But what does Richard Kemp think? | Mute

Those of you who know me will recognise that I'm hardly a monarchist. That said, I see nothing unusual about a head of state addressing their nation at a time of national crisis. It would be unprecedented if they didn't. While I didn't watch Her Majesty's speech yesterday evening I read the text of it later. I understand reading something can give a different imprssion to what a live recording does, but I failed to see how those words generated the kinds of responses I saw on social media. "First rate", "the best speech you'll hear all year", "not a ...

Posted by Andrew on A Scottish Liberal | Mute

Planning is often a tactical game. The property developer behind a series of applications to build houses on the garden of Linney House has asked the planning inspectorate to decide on his 2019 plans to build eight houses. That means this scheme cannot be determined by the Southern Planning Committee, though the committee will be asked what decision it might have made. At the same time, the developer has applied to start building an existing permission for three houses. James Hepworth has no intention of building this scheme. But he needs to dig some foundations to show that the development ...

Posted by andybodders on Andy Boddington | Mute

Corbyn's out and Starmer's in. What does it mean for us? I feel it means a contemplation of our relationship with other parties. I feel we need to open a discussion about what happens next, even if it goes nowhere. Now, don't get me wrong. I think we should stand firm to our liberal values, and I certainly don't think we should become synonymous with any other party. When a voter puts their cross in the Liberal Democrat box, they should be assured they are voting for the Liberal Democrat candidate. Nor do I think electoral pacts are necessarily the ...

Posted by Christopher Johnson on Liberal Democrat Voice | Mute

The other day I uncovered a stress ball that I had long forgotten about and had it not had 'Sefton Travel Team' stamped on it I would have struggled to know where it had come from. I'm guessing that it came from my time as a Sefton Councillor, or even as Council Leader. It was probably given to me as I'm a train nut and maybe by someone who thought I was exhibiting stress at the time! Yes, it's in the shape of a metro/transit type carriage of a generic type:- But being a train nut I was tempted, having ...

Posted by Cllr. Tony Robertson on Sefton Focus | Mute

Another work week starts, although the meaning of that is becoming even more fuzzy than it was in any event. Perhaps the need for more people to work from home will create more flexible working conditions for us going forward?... 2 big stories The Prime Minister is in hospital, as a "precautionary measure". The speech marks are because, given the criteria for admission into hospital, he shouldn't apparently be in there. Whatever the case though, I wish him well. The Guardian considers here who runs the country in his absence; In his role as first secretary of state, the prime ...

Posted by Mark Valladares on Liberal Democrat Voice | Mute

DUNDEE CITY COUNCIL - WEEKLY ROAD REPORT REPORT FOR WEST END WARD - WEEK COMMENCING MONDAY 6 APRIL 2020 Nablus Avenue (at the rising bollard) - closed overnight (7.00pm - 6.00am) on Wednesday 8 April for Scottish Water manhole repair works.

After this, the debate over whether the Liberal Democrats need a new logo will gain new life. Thursday It has become my custom, when the first stirrings of spring are felt here in Rutland, to offer the Bird of Liberty a short holiday. Despite my voluntary isolation, I have maintained the custom this year. More to the point, I have maintained the custom despite the Bird of Liberty. At the best of times it is a foul-smelling creature of uncertain temper, and these are from the best of times. It has taking to swanking about the village telling people that ...

Posted by Jonathan Calder on Liberal England | Mute

This makes me happy and, God knows, we need cheering up at the moment. The group playing is the Nederlands Blazers Ensemble (NBE) - or Netherlands Wind Ensemble. Thanks to automatic translation and their website, I can tell you:that itis a group of more than 20 top musicians who come together about 80 times a year to play special programmes at home and abroad. ...A thirst for adventure drives the NBE to create theatrical music programs that can seldom be captured under one musical heading; the NBE combines contemporary and early music of all shapes and sizes that stimulates the ...

Posted by Jonathan Calder on Liberal England | Mute
Sun 5th
17:36

Welcome Keir Starmer

It is a relief that the Labour Party has chosen Sir Keir Starmer as their new leader. Thank goodness their members have put electability purity of dogma. That is not to say that I think Jeremy Corbyn is anything other than a decent man with reasonable ideas and a record of being right. Unfortunately It was too easy for the hostile press to distort his past record so that, for example, support of the Palestinian cause was too easily twisted into anti-Semitism, and dialogue with the IRA was turned into support of terrorism. I've no doubt that it won't take ...

Posted by Peter Wrigley on Keynesian Liberal | Mute

Our late flowering cherry tree is starting to bloom (photo taken this morning) In today's Observer, Martin Lewis (of moneysavingexpert.com) is quoted as saying: When you watch the news, they're interested in telling you what's happening. I'm interested in telling you what you should do. So when someone's desperate, and it's someone for whom I don't have an answer, that's when I get really upset. That's when I sit at my desk and I have a little cry. I find it really frustrating. I know I'm meant to be the person who can answer questions - but sometimes there isn't ...

Posted by Mary Reid on Liberal Democrat Voice | Mute

I grew up in Doncaster, where the Lib Dems didn't have much of a presence. I couldn't have told you much about the Lib Dems, except one of them dated a Cheeky Girl. But when the first General Election that I could vote in came along, I did those online quizzes that told you which party's policies you most aligned with, and kept getting Lib Dem. So I looked a little bit into the party, thought they seemed okay and cast my vote. Years later, angry in the aftermath of Brexit and wanting to channel my energy into activism, a ...

Posted by Chris Northwood on Liberal Democrat Voice | Mute
Sun 5th
14:27

November 2005 books

November 2005 was a heavy month for travel. I started in Montenegro, went from there for Vienna and then on to Kyiv, my first ever visit to Ukraine (I enjoyed visiting the Bulgakov house and the Scythian gold exhibition at the Museum of National Historical Treasures); and then at the end of the month I went to Berlin and from there to New York. I also found time for an informational interview with my current employers; I thought it went rather well, but it was almost eight and a half years before they got back to me! Back at home, ...

Yesterday saw Keir Starmer, the broadly moderate pro-EU MP, elected leader of the Labour Party with more votes in the first round than Jeremy Corbyn got in 2015. This is a welcome change, with the old hardcore socialist vanguard being swept away and replaced with a softer, more broadchurch team. Compared to the past 5 years under Corbyn, the bar is very low for Keir to be successful. However, his election also shows just why who we pick as our next leader is so crucial to the success of our party. No longer do we have two extremes on the ...

Posted by Callum James Littlemore on Liberal Democrat Voice | Mute

Mathew Hulbert Mathew Hulbert is a charity Trustee, LGBT+ rights campaigner and parish councillor from Leicestershire in the English East Midlands. He was a Borough Councillor from 2011 to 2015 and chaired the board of the Leicester LGBT Centre from 2017 to 2020. He is active in the Liberal Democrats and is Vice Chair of the constituency party in Bosworth. He says he enjoys writing and listening to cheesy boy band songs. I caught up with Mathew yesterday for a socially distanced interview in which we discussed various issues including Covid-19, the Labour leadership election and Scotland. Thanks for agreeing ...

Posted by Andrew on A Scottish Liberal | Mute

Julian House domestic abuse refuge is open and taking referrals @JulianHouseUK Now, more than ever, is the time to support your neighbours. If you hear something, report it.

So, we can't go delivering, canvassing or envelope stuffing at the moment so what can we do? What about a bit of thinking!? The coronavirus is making huge changes to the way that the Government, councils, businesses and individuals are doing things. Some of those are good. We welcome increased support to social care and health organisations, more support to emerging businesses and enhanced recognition of the role of councils in terms of service delivery. We welcome the greater respect that is being given to those who work in public services that we are relying on to keep us fed ...

Posted by Richard Kemp on Liberal Democrat Voice | Mute
Sun 5th
11:00

My tweets

Sat, 12:05: RT @britainelects: Labour leadership result: Keir Starmer: 56.2% Rebecca Long Bailey: 27.6% Lisa Nandy: 16.2% Sat, 12:05: RT @britainelects: Labour deputy leadership result, first round: Angela Rayner: 41.7% Richard Burgon: 17.3% Rosena Allin-Khan: 16.8% Ian M... Sat, 13:42: RT @Emily_Rosina: "It's a show that has always united fans. But now the Doctor is helping people around the world cope with the coronavirus... Sat, 13:49: My week on Twitter 🎉: 29 Mentions, 2.7K Mention Reach, 69 Likes, 27 Retweets, 98.6K Retweet Reach. See yours with... https://t.co/5YCgex9W3A Sat, 15:28: A Clockwork Orange https://t.co/eD4FVNeaiU Sat, 17:23: 17 people in front of ...

As tens of thousands of small businesses struggle to survive, and millions struggle to cope on reduced incomes and an uncertain employment future, at least one business is looking to make huge profits out of the COVID-19 crisis. The Mirror reports that Jacob Rees-Mogg's firm stands to make a fortune out of the turmoil caused by the coronavirus crisis. The MP owns at least 15 per cent of a company investing in businesses hit by falling share values, meaning he was entitled to a reported £1 million share of last year's £19.5million profits.: Somerset Capital Management says investors have a ...

Posted by Peter Black on Peter Black | Mute

It is a sad reality that many people are forced to live with abusers. To share accommodation with people who dominate, control and use domestic violence. The lockdown means that the casual contact with people on the street, in the playground, maybe a cup of coffee, can't happen anymore. We don't know how long this lockdown will last. For those suffering abuse, it is harder than ever to plea for help. Abusers often monitor internet and phone use. Shropshire Council has increased its funding for domestic abuse services which remain available 24 hours. Telford and Wrekin is making similar provision. ...

Posted by andybodders on Andy Boddington | Mute

As we all stay safe in our homes, we have time to think and reflect. Too much time for some I know but at least we can take a step back and see the wood for the trees. First of all, I want to say that postponing the leadership election was the right thing to do due to the extraordinary and overwhelming nature of the crisis we're facing as a country and as a planet. The focus has to be on saving lives and supporting our communities. But postponing it for so long – another 14 months – puts us ...

Posted by Paul Hodgkinson on Liberal Democrat Voice | Mute

Bill Brand tells the story of a left-wing Labour MP, played by Jack Shepherd, in a fictionalised but highly recognisable version of the 1970s. Originally broadcast in 1976 by Thames TV, Bill Brand was unusual – and is still of interest now – thanks to the way individual episodes really dug deep into different aspects of British politics. The episode all about a political party leadership contest does not stand out that much from many other political TV dramas. But an episode all about compositing and possibly referring back a motion at a party conference? That you don't get with ...

Posted by Mark Pack on Mark Pack | Mute

This is green waste collection week in Ludlow. It might just be the last for a while. So far it has been possible to keep all collection rounds running but it is getting more difficult as staff numbers fall. If collections are reduced during the Covid-19 emergency, green waste collection will be the first to go. If staffing levels fall further, collection of boxes of dry recyclables and blue bags of paper and card will be paused. There is no threat to black bins but please do not overload your black bins with material you can store until the emergency ...

Posted by andybodders on Andy Boddington | Mute

It's the last day of the tax year, which means that, as of tomorrow, you can start getting ready to complete your 2019/20 Self Assessment tax return – if you've got one to fill in, of course... 2 big stories Are you more likely to catch the Coronavirus if you're a woman, but more likely to die from it if you're male? The Washington Post reports on the evidence from the United States; The disproportionate toll of the virus appears to have deep biological roots. An emerging body of research has revealed that women's bodies are better at fighting off ...

Posted by Mark Valladares on Liberal Democrat Voice | Mute

Further update - for Sunday 5th April 2020 from Councillor Fraser Macpherson (West End) and Councillor Craig Duncan (Broughty Ferry) Sadly, the last few days have seen yet more cases of Coronavirus in Scotland and more deaths across the country. That makes it all the more important that we all continue to : • stay at home • only go outside for essential food, health and work reasons • stay 2 metres (6 feet) away from other people • wash our hands regularly • wash our hands as soon as we get home Doing this will help slow the spread ...