Nandy, L, Lucas, C and Bowers C, eds (2016), The Alternative, London: Biteback Publishing The Alternative is an attempt to sketch the skeleton of a progressive politics. The editors' introduction juxtaposes despair and optimism. It was born in the aftermath of the 2015 General Election which saw off Labour and LibDem challenges to the Tories and rewarded the Greens with one seat for more than a million votes. Votes per seat per party in 2015 make interesting reading:SNP 25972Conservatives 34347Labour 40290LibDem 301983Green 1157613UKIP 3881099 (which is of course now no seats for nearly four million votes) It takes 11 times ...

Posted by Rob Parsons on A comfortable place

Last week they took us to Lincoln. Today we venture further into the county on the Saturday-only service from Gainsborough Central to Cleethorpes. We then visit the Lincolnshire Coast Light Railway, before crossing the Humber to Hull.

Posted by Jonathan Calder on Liberal England
Mon 17th

Six of the Best 685

"She saw city life as the genial co-existence of many different neighbourhoods, where the residents supported and looked out for one another while enjoying access to all the cultural advantages of the greater metropolis." Wayne Lawson reviews Citizen Jane, a new film about Jane Jacobs. Between the early Wittgenstein and the late Wittgenstein came Wittgenstein the school teacher. Colin Marshall on a short, strange and brutal career that took place deep in rural Austria. "Jonathan Meades has written a cookbook and it is, as the bright young things may still sometimes say, the most Jonathan Meades thing ever." Good news ...

Posted by Jonathan Calder on Liberal England
Mon 17th

Formby Passion Play

Passion Plays go back to medieval times and tell the story of Holy Week. The early ones were I think in latin and had a musical component Formby's Passion play- which extends to include the resurrection-is much more modern. It was attended by about 500 people who assembled in Chapel Street and walked , singing Easter hymns, to the land adjacent to the Formby Pool where the play was performed. This years play was, I understand, written and directed by Dympna Edwards and was a great success. Everyone at Churches Together in Formby should be congratulated for the staging of ...

Posted by iain on theMayoralBlog

It is a tribute to the excellence of Eli Pariser's book, The Filter Bubble, that even now, six years on from its publication, a volume about the latest technology trends still reads as up-to-date and relevant.

Posted by Mark Pack on Mark Pack

I spent a couple of hours at the Freshfield Animal Rescue Centre in Ince Blundell today as part of the 'Rabbit On Event'. My chief responsibility was to present a volunteer award to Ether Webber who has been a regular at Ince Blundell since 1995. Meeting so many dedicated volunteers like Ethel has been on of the highlights of the last year. It is folk like her that make such an enormous difference to our community. Charities like Freshfield could not operate without the active participation on their army of voluntary workers. I got to have a good look round ...

Posted by iain on theMayoralBlog

What's this about then? A recent report by the Local Government Association showed that council referrals of potential victims of modern slavery, criminal gangs exploiting vulnerable workers living in squalor and on scandalous wages, have soared by 78%. Councils and fire and rescue services have taken part in major operations to rescue workers being paid as [...]

Posted by Cllr Darren Fower on Cllr Darren Fower

Embed from Getty Images That's the encouraging headline in today's Guardian. And the timing couldn't be better with everything to play for on 4th May in the local elections and the Manchester Gorton by-election. In Cornwall ... ... the tide appears to be turning. The Lib Dems have won a succession of council by-elections in Cornwall and are now once again the biggest group on the council with 43 members, governing in coalition with the independents. Lib Dem loyalists are buoyed both by the national party's resurgence and by a report in the New Statesman claiming that Lynton Crosby, who ...

Posted by Mary Reid on Liberal Democrat Voice

This is to do with rumoured casting for the next Doctor, and although I don't think it is a spoiler (because I think the rumours are bollocks) I will be applying spoiler cuts to the actor's name just in case. You probably don't want to hover over any of the links to news reports either, mind, because the actor is named in some of the URLs. If, as is rumoured in all the dead tree papers (although they all seem to be using the Daily Mirror as their source, so I'm not taking the volume of reports as indicative) ( ...

I've just obtained a copy of a study undertaken by Network Rail at Denmark Hill station over two days in July 2015, approximately two weeks before the start of state school holidays. So the many local private schools would have already started their summer school holidays. Video cameras captured the tops of all stairs to the platforms and also the gateline. Counts were completed for the AM (07:00 – 10:00) and PM (16:00 – 19:00) peaks and were classified by person type (i.e. person with large luggage, bicycle etc). Counts were provided in 5 minute intervals and showed that flows ...

Posted by James Barber on James Barber
Mon 17th

the stag

The beast lay awkwardly across the road hemmed in by the obscenity of shock and pain pressed on the labouring heart beneath its sleek dun coat; its head was high, its neck was taut, struggling against gravity with hatred of its torment and the closing graze of cold oblivion coming motionless to end it, on an [...]

Posted by AL Franklin on Maintain the Advance!

Do you know someone who you think should be an MP? Then tell them about our BME Inspiration Day taking place in Manchester on Saturday 22 April. Or perhaps you are the person who would enjoy the day! Inspiration Days are friendly and informal events, designed to give members, especially new members, the opportunity to develop their skills, learn more about becoming active in the party and meet other like-minded people from across the regions. This day is specifically for anyone who self identifies as an ethnic minority. The training will cover: Advice on getting more involved through different party ...

Posted by Natalie Chindipha on Liberal Democrat Voice

This is only a minor issue, but one I thought people should be aware of... While the website at says "We won't publish your personal details anywhere or use them for anything other than this petition", it *is* still ... Continue reading →

Posted by Andrew Hickey on Sci-Ence! Justice Leak!

This is your spoiler warning. ( under the cut there may be spoilers ) [IMG: comment count unavailable] comments

The question of competence over Brexit opens up a route for people who voted Leave to back anti-Brexit opposition parties.

Posted by Mark Pack on Mark Pack
Mon 17th

Short note for new folks

If I've subscribed to you but not given you access, don't worry. The vast vast majority of my posts are public, and f-locked posts tend to be very rare and only for people I know in real life. If I've subscribed to you, that is a pretty strong mark of my interest ;) [IMG: comment count unavailable] comments

Mon 17th

Linkblogging for 17/4/17

Just a few links today, but they're all very good ones... Nick Barlow wrote a blog post I was going to write, about the idea of a new centre party, but better than I would have written it, so now ... Continue reading →

Posted by Andrew Hickey on Sci-Ence! Justice Leak!

Lib Dem Freedom of Information requests have revealed the numbers of EU citizens who work in the Houses of Parliament. Nationality by Category Commons staff Lords staff British 1971 485 Irish 25 10 EU (not including British or Irish) 112 48 Non-EU 108 36 A total of 195 staff out of 2795 are non-British European nationals, that is, 7%. Of those, 5.7% (the non-Irish EU citizens) face an uncertain post-Brexit future. The Huffington Post covered the story, and included this comment from Caroline Pidgeon (Member of the London Assembly and Shadow Minister for London): Every MP or peer who fails ...

Posted by NewsHound on Liberal Democrat Voice

EU leaders 'to strip Britain of valued European medicine and banking agencies within weeks' Anybody surprised by this? Other than the Daily Express, obviously, who are fulminating about PUNISHMENT like they didn't want everyone to vote for exactly this. gallifrey_times | GT for Monday the 17th April 2017 All the Doctor Who news and views since yesterday (there's no spoilers in the actual text of this, but clicking ANY of the links might lead you to spoilers) miss_s_b | What counts as Spoilers? In which I ask you, dear reader, via the medium of An Poll, what you think counts ...

With party membership heading towards 90,000 it is also pleasing to hear that ALDC has recruited over 3,000 members. ALDC – originally the Association of Liberal Democrat Councillors – is open to Lib Dems aspiring to be local councillors and well as those already elected, so now bills itself as the Association of Liberal Democrat Councillors and Campaigners. ALDC provides comprehensive advice on campaigning in local elections, including its excellent, and intensive, Kickstart weekends. On 6th April Susan Morgan won a by-election at Aylesbury Vale District Council with a massive 38% swing from UKIP. She is now being celebrated as ...

Posted by The Voice on Liberal Democrat Voice

Joe Harmer and I after he was selected as our Wavertree Candidate. He and Cllr Carl Cashman our candidate for Regional Mayor are the face of the political future in Liverpool and our City Region The biggest political headline in ... Continue reading →

Posted by richardkemp on But what does Richard Kemp think?

With over 99% of votes in Turkey's constitutional referendum now counted, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is celebrating what he has described as his "clear win" — a mandate to change the nature of the presidency from a theoretically largely ceremonial role to an executive one. In fact, since assuming the presidency following a decade in [...]

Posted by jonathanfryer on Jonathan Fryer
Mon 17th

What counts as Spoilers?

The lovely [IMG: [personal profile] ] ruthct21 commented on a post of mine yesterday (more in sorrow than in anger, I think) that she was going to have to avoid reading my stuff if I wasn't more careful about spoilers for Doctor Who, as she's somewhere in South America and hasn't seen the new episode yet. This came as something of a surprise to me, because I thought I had been pretty careful about spoilers when posting about Doctor Who... But then it occurred to me that Ruth and I might have very different definitions of what constitutes a spoiler. ...

The Federal Conference Committee met on 11th April 2017 to review Spring Conference 2017 and to consider the feedback received. Spring Conference 2018 – York Spring Conference in York was a success overall. The feedback that we considered came from a number of sources. We received a document containing the comments of committee members, party staff and the stewards. We also considered a summary of the online feedback and an analysis of the speakers cards submitted as against those called. Most of the feedback was very positive. We had a record number of attendees. We were 19% up on the ...

Posted by Geoff Payne on Liberal Democrat Voice

After some chasing this is the current situation: " 6 April 2017 Our Ref: 33301153 Dulwich / Herne Hill flooding Dear Councillor Barber I write further to my email of 27 March regarding the information that was requested by your constituent, Susan Badman, in relation to our flood prevention and plans for the local area moving forward. I can confirm that we have looked at how we react to flooding and identify potential leaks and an independent forensic review has been carried out to cover the November/December 2016 trunk mains failures in the above areas. This has looked at all ...

Posted by James Barber on James Barber

Being a leaseholder with Southwark Council as the freeholder can be beyond frustrating sometimes. One aspect is to make changes to your property you need Southwark Council to give their permission. This can be a costly and time consuming process. This table gives an idea of how the backlog of such requests grew over time: 2010/11 2011/12 2012/13 2013/14 2014/15 How many leaseholders requests to improve their properties? 39 213 208 266 228 Max. charge per request? £203 £213 £325 £341 £368 How many refused? 0 1 0 2 0 How many agreed? 12 100 98 109 75 Outstanding/backlog 27 ...

Posted by James Barber on James Barber

From the Curator of Museum Services, University of Dundee :Way Back When - Life as an Art Student discussion event Tuesday 18th April 2017, 5.30pm at the D'Arcy Thompson Lecture Theatre, Tower Building, University of Dundee. To accompany the exhibition of Walter Simms' photographs in the Tower Foyer Gallery, this special event will feature Walter and some of his fellow graduates from Duncan of Jordanstone College reminiscing about their experiences as art students in Dundee in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Free admission but please book here.

The revelation by the Independent that EU leaders are set to strip Britain of major European agencies regarded as the bloc's crown jewels in the early stages of the Brexit negotiations should not come as a surprise to anybody. After all many of us have been predicting such a move for some time. The paper says that diplomats on the continent agreed at a gathering last week that the European Banking Authority and the European Medicines Agency are to be relocated from London to another city in the bloc. The European Banking Authority, established in 2011, is an independent EU ...

Posted by Peter Black on Peter Black

Chrome and Firefox Phishing Attack Uses Domains Identical to Known Safe Sites Well worth reading. (tags: security internet )

Council officials after the latest batch of speed surveys and crash reports have come up with the 12 roads where 20mph is being exceeded the most across Southwark: BARRY ROAD BRENCHLEY GARDENS CROXTED ROAD DULWICH WOOD PARK FOREST HILL ROAD GROVE LANE LORDSHIP LANE HERNE HILL PLOUGH WAY REDRIFF ROAD SALTER ROAD SYDENHAM HILL Sadly many of these roads in in East Dulwich. They will now review what measures could be taken to bring vehicles down to the speed limit of 20mph. The most effective has been shown to be average speed cameras. Close to 100% adherence where installed. But ...

Posted by James Barber on James Barber