Here's Alistair Carmichael talking to BBC News earlier, saying that the Lib Dems are "optimistic and confident" about what we can achieve in this election: "Optimistic and confident" – @acarmichaelmp to @BBCScotlandNews on Lib Dems election hopes — Nick Eardley (@nickeardleybbc) April 18, 2017

Posted by The Voice on Liberal Democrat Voice

A very warm welcome to the 5000 new members who have joined us since Theresa May announced she would ask parliament to call a general election this morning! What a breathtaking number! The party has now more than doubled in size since the May 2015 general election. Tim Farron commented: This election is a chance ... Continue reading There are now twice as many Lib Dem members as at the 2015 general election – and more than 5000 people joined today!

Posted by paulwalternewbury on

Having a general election in June is absolutely the right course of action, for the good of the country. We need it to clear the air and clarify the public's view on Brexit. The 23rd June 2016 referendum result was narrow, one dimensional and controversial. We need a full general election to have a debate ... Continue reading General election – the right course of action for the country, but I have my suspicions as to the motives

Posted by paulwalternewbury on
Tue 18th

Cry, my beloved country?

It is dark, and I am afraid. And I am moved to 'pick up my pen' and 'write'. Hopefully, it is for the best. A General Election has been called, with a fractured, crippled Opposition, liberal forces recovering from a near death experience and with a Government who, despite showing all the signs of having no idea as to how a modern economy works, seem determined to apply shock therapy in a manner comparable to that applied to the economy of the Soviet Union in the 1920s, albeit hardly on the same scale. My recollection is that the latter didn't ...

Posted by Mark Valladares on A liberal amongst the country gentry...

Embed from Getty Images A very warm welcome to the 5000 new members who have joined us since Theresa May announced she would ask parliament to call a general election this morning! What a breathtaking number! The party has now more than doubled in size since the May 2015 general election. Tim Farron commented: This election is a chance to change the direction of our country and thousands are joining our fight. If you want to avoid a disastrous Hard Brexit. If you want to keep Britain in the Single Market. If you want a Britain that is open, tolerant ...

Posted by Paul Walter on Liberal Democrat Voice
Tue 18th

Note to Self:

Having a big angry rant on twitter when you're literally drooping from tiredness after a long day's lib demmery including a branch meeting is not the most sensible thing to do... Off to bed now, peeps. Laters. [IMG: comment count unavailable] comments

Photo © David Hallam-Jones I was sorry to hear of the death of the theatre director Michael Bogdanov. Back in the 1970s he was the artistic director of Leicester's Phoenix theatre. (That's the old Phoenix, shown in the photograph above,) He was kind enough to put a season of three Shakespeare plays under the title He That Plays the King. As these included both plays I was studying for A level - Hamlet and The Tempest - I saw both those productions. Bill Wallis, whom I knew chiefly from the satirical Radio 4 programme Week Ending, played both Hamlet and ...

Posted by Jonathan Calder on Liberal England

Embed from Getty Images Having a general election in June is absolutely the right course of action, for the good of the country. We need it to clear the air and clarify the public's view on Brexit. The 23rd June 2016 referendum result was narrow, one dimensional and controversial. We need a full general election to have a debate which clarifies the Brexit mandate. In particular, we need a sensible discussion on membership of the single market and the customs union. So I agree with Theresa May's call for a general election. However, I am very suspicious of her motives ...

Posted by Paul Walter on Liberal Democrat Voice

I often read here that the Euro has pushed Southern Europe, and indirectly somewhat also the UK, into misery and that the EU is therefore a doomed project that must be left. I could not disagree more. Greece did not develop any competitive employment, especially for the qualified, since joining the EU 1981. Its dominant public and partially closed private sectors do not have the economic structures of a developed industrialized country. Strong growth in the last ten years has been based on public and private consumption financed by the EU and an uncontrolled amassment of debt. The disappearance of ...

Posted by Arnold Kiel on Liberal Democrat Voice

On the day Theresa May calls a general election we also have this: BREAKING: The CPS have told Channel 4 News tonight that they are considering charges against more than 30 individuals. #electionexpenses — Channel 4 News (@Channel4News) April 18, 2017 Interested in more stories about how our elections are run? Follow my dedicated election law channels on Facebook or Twitter which include bonus extra stories that don't appear on this blog.

Posted by Mark Pack on Mark Pack

... and I hope you will too on May 4th if you have local elections, and on June 8th in the General Election (assuming that the PM gets her way tomorrow in parliament, of course). The post Least surprising news ever ... appeared first on ten pence piece.

Posted by tim on ten pence piece

You could have knocked me over with a feather. When a resident in Fishmore strolled down his drive this morning to say that Theresa May had called a general election, I couldn't take it in. After all, she had only recently said there would be no elections until 2020. I guess she had a bad Easter. I distrust her motives. She wants to crush the opposition and thereby crush democratic debate. Whatever the reasons for Theresa May's volte-face, we are facing a general election on 8 June. I don't blame Theresa May for changing her mind. It is only lousy ...

Posted by andybodders on Andy Boddington

Embed from Getty Images After the carnage of 2015, I was too scared to spend much time studying the general election results in detail. Election Polling is made of sterner stuff and has produced a list of Liberal Democrat targets in order of the swing needed to win them. And the picture is more encouraging than I expected. Here is the top 20: Cambridge (Labour) 0.58%Eastbourne (Conservative) 0.69%Lewes (Conservative) 1.07%Thornbury & Yate (Conservative) 1.54%Twickenham (Conservative) 1.63%Dunbartonshire East (SNP) 1.97%Kingston & Surbiton (Conservative) 2.39%St Ives (Conservative) 2.56%Edinburgh West (SNP) 2.93%Torbay (Conservative) 3.42%Sutton & Cheam (Conservative) 3,93%Bath (Conservative) 4.06%Burnley (Labour) 4.08%Bermondsey & ...

Posted by Jonathan Calder on Liberal England

Today Theresa May announced her intention to hold a General Election in Britain on 8 June. She is certain to get her way, notwithstanding the Fixed Term Parliament Act. Personally I'm not happy – this is an unwelcome distraction from other things I need to do – and my post on mental health has been swamped. ... Continue reading Don't underestimate Theresa May – but the Lib Dems will play a critical role in this election →

Posted by Matthew on thinking liberal

Until this morning, the biggest surprise news I might have expected to hear this week was who the new Doctor is, then there came news that Theresa May was going to be making an announcement at 11.15. 'I have spent the weekend in extensive talks with Chris Chibnall and I am now calling on the nation to unite behind Kris Marshall.' — Nick Barlow (@nickjbarlow) April 18, 2017 I might almost have preferred that, but instead it looks like we're getting the first snap election Britain's had for a while and everyone's spent the rest of the day running around ...

Posted by Nick on What You Can Get Away With

What do I want to happen? Lib Dems romp home with a historic 50 seat majority. What (more prosaically) do I think is the most likely outcome? 1. We will successfully defend our 9 seats. The hardest will ironically be our newest - the home of Ham Common, Richmond Park, where we are defending a seat the Tories won in 2015 with a 20k+ majority, and we wont have the benefit of thousands of activists descending on us every week. Needless to say we will be fighting hard. By the way - WHERE'S MY RICHMOND PARK VICTORY BADGE?) 2. We ...

Posted by Richard Morris on A VIEW FROM HAM COMMON

Very welcome news from Vince Cable: with a snap general election, he's standing for Parliament again in his former Twickenham constituency: I am limbering up for my 10th General Election and am optimistic that I can win back Twickenham for the Lib Dems. It was tempting to give up in 2015: go off to a quieter life on the red benches, spend more time in the garden. I certainly haven't been idle: I've written a couple of books including a novel, filled several professorships, done some charity work. But I feel that there are big political battles still to be ...

Posted by Mark Pack on Mark Pack
Tue 18th


Hello, fellow Dreamwidthers! This ... is a bit unexpected. When I first joined Dreamwidth, I decided that mirroring my LJ was a bit pointless, as I had a huge number of followers in common, and mirrored LJs seemed to suffer a bit from splitting comment threads across the platforms. Instead, I decided to Dreamwidth it as a slightly different, longer-form blogging platform, for a mixture of political posts and reviews. And I kept that up for a while, although it rather petered out a few years ago when I got a job with a longer commute and found I had ...

Posted on David Matthewman

The Lib Dem Bird is flying high as we enter the first hurdle of the County and Regional Elections. It will be soaring when the gains come in after those elections and before the recently announced General Election When I ... Continue reading →

Posted by richardkemp on But what does Richard Kemp think?

Yesterday, Brexit was basically unstoppable. Theresa May's government was set on it. Resistance to it within the Conservative Party had collapsed to such an extent that only Ken Clarke voted against triggering Article 50. Likewise, an unpopular and divided Labour Party led by a closet leaver and paranoid about UKIP's threat to its working-class base, [...]

Posted by Mark Mills on Matter Of Facts

We have a Prime Minister who said she was in favour of Britain remaining in the EU, but couldn't have moved more quickly or enthusiastically to become PM of Brexit Britain. She swore blind that she would not call a snap General Election, but would soldier on till 2020 in the interests of the stability the country needs. Now she tells us we will have an election in 2017 (and it's all the other parties' fault). So what next? Theresa May may have grown up in a Vicarage, but I would want her to be writing the weekly notices. You'd ...

Posted by Owen Temple on Owen Temple & Margaret Nealis

My thoughts so far: 1. The timing is reasonably good before Brexit negotiations start in earnest. We are likely to lose a few weeks, and Article 50 day would have been a better choice on this count. 2. The PM is going on about the strength of her position, and how important this is in negotiations. There's a certain amount of bluster here. A successful election reinforces her position in the House of Commons – it does nothing to induce EU governments to give us what we want. 3. The Tories are complaining about opposition existing and opposing. This must ...

Posted by Joe Otten on Liberal Democrat Voice

I'm still debating whether to follow the example of 2010 and 2015 and do a daily general election post here. Part of me feels like I should if only solidarity with the academics who about elections and have suddenly found that they've now got to add 'write an election book' into their already overstuffed 2017 diaries. While I debate that, here's the first of my election hot takes, as everyone with a blog is mandated by law to do at least one of these today. This election has the potential to start rebuilding the Liberal Democrats as a Westminster force ...

Posted by Nick on What You Can Get Away With

UK Prime Minister, Theresa May, has called a snap general election for 8 June. Doubtless she hopes to capitalise on Labour's continuing melt-down and were she to win handsomely, she would claim that is a ringing endorsement for her red, white and blue Brexit policy. And that is exactly why she must not win handsomely. [...]

Posted by jonathanfryer on Jonathan Fryer

This is a playlist I created two years ago just after the disastrous 2015 election. Seemed appropriate to reshare it now. Tracklist is: George Hardy The Land Song Tom Robinson Band Winter of 79 The Bonzo Dog Band No Matter ... Continue reading →

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

So it seems that "British Politics: The Soap Opera" has been recommissioned for a second season in 2017. It's nice to see that the financial backers of this farcical 2016 melodrama have faith in, what appears to be a failing franchise. Image Source: I haven't really got my head wrapped around this yet, so this is, against my usual inclination, a bit of a knee-jerk-reaction blog. My initial feeling is that this is a party-political move: May has seen that the Conservative Party has a huge lead in the polls, and, as an un-elected Prime Minister, she sees a ...

Posted by Dani Tougher on More Than Nothing

Well, who saw that coming? Not me. But Theresa May's decision to call a 'snap' election actually suits all parties pretty well. First, the Tories will win, and will win big. Two recent polls suggest leads over Labour topping 20%, and that's before Lynton Crosby gets to work on Jeremy Corbyn's policies and record. Assuming the Tories win back a chunk of Ukip support, dozens of Labour seats will tumble even if there's no Labour-to-Tory swing. And there will be a Labour-to-Tory swing. The only real question is whether the Tory majority can be restricted to double-figures. But there is ...

Posted by Stephen Tall on Stephen Tall
Tue 18th

8th June, eh?

We'll go polling once again to satisfy the calculations of their cynical party managers and their backroom infighting – backstabbers in a nationalist disguise. But we are not the Turks. Perhaps somewhat like the Dutch, we'll troop into the flimsy booths in our shabby local halls and sit those bastards down!

Posted by AL Franklin on Maintain the Advance!

The opinion polls have got 84% of British general elections correct when it comes to picking the winning party...

Posted by Mark Pack on Mark Pack

What's this to do with? Previously, I was contacted by people living along Malvern Road, who said they were concerned by an increase in traffic and speeding traffic. As a result, I raised the issue with the Tory Cabinet Member for Communities and Environment Capital, at a formal meeting of Full Council. Residents living in Malvern [...]

Posted by Cllr Darren Fower on Cllr Darren Fower

The moment some thought wouldn't happen has arrived: an early general election. I myself put the likelihood of this happening in 2017 at a mere 20% in my book, so I am as stunned as anyone. Unless somehow Labour whips a vote against (and Corbyn has already publicly said Labour will vote for it tomorrow) and the whip holds, a set of events that seems very unlikely, we're going to the polls in a few weeks time. This poses several questions, obviously. One, will the Conservatives win a large victory – or a massive one? I tend to think the ...

Posted by Nick on
Tue 18th


You know when I said "The Gorton by-election is now into its final few weeks (the fourth of May is the election date), and so I should have more writing time again shortly, and I hope to go back to ... Continue reading →

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

Commenting on the Prime Minister's decision to call a Snap General Election on 8 June, Liberal Democrat parliamentary candidate for Hastings & Rye Nick Perry said, 'Amber Rudd should be very worried indeed that Mrs May has called a snap General Election. Many local residents have expressed concern to me about an increasing lack of [...]

Posted by nickperrylibdem on Nick Perry For Hastings & Rye

I'm not convinced that it's to do with brexit, despite her speech. Labour have rubber-stamped or abstained on every single vote. She was getting brexit through with no trouble whatsoever, aside from noisy shouting from us and the SNP. Yes, she is gambling that Corbyn's crapness will give her a big majority. But it is a gamble; there's no certainties in politics. There is one thing that's standing out to me, though... up to 20 tory MPs are under threat of prosecution. TMay has a working majority of 17. If even half of those look like successful prosecutions, that's potentially ...

Theresa May's announcement has just finished. There will be a vote in the House of Commons tomorrow – a two thirds majority is required to call a General Election. Labour have said they would back this, but they could perhaps thwart the timetable if they wished. May's theme seemed to be that the opposition parties and the Lords were getting in her way and weakened her ability to do the job, and to negotiate in Europe. Quite how a majority in the Commmons is not good enough, reflects more I think on her leadership. And, frankly, if this opposition is ...

Posted by Joe Otten on Liberal Democrat Voice

legionseagle | "She was paid for it, therefore it's not art" An excellent counterpoint to that "it's more complicated" article about Fearless Girl Vs Charging Bull I linked to the other day. The Cover of How To Suppress Women's Writing by Joanna Russ ... which is worth bearing in mind while you read LegionsEagle's post above. The canvas data that proved to be spot on in Richmond suggests Labour could be in trouble in Manchester Gorton *cheers Jackie on* The list of 600+ companies with which PayPal might share your personal information There are plausible operational reasons for all of ...

At 10.15am our beloved Prime Minister TMay announced that she would be making an unexpected statement from the steps of Downing Street at 11.15am. Political Twitter has gone mental. It's an absolute frenzy. And it's joyous. I've seen loads of reasons postulated for her statement:The Queen is dead (unlikely; she'd announce that to parliament first) She's no confidencing her own government to force an early election WAR WITH SPAIN! UP YOUR SENORS! War with North Korea, probably holding Donald's hand. She's resinging on health/personal grounds They're finally arresting Blair for war crimes (this feels vanishingly unlikely to me; Teflon Tony) ...

I want to agree with the Guardian's Suzanne Moore in her recent article The lesson of Prince Harry's grief? We need mental health services for all. And mostly I do. But I think she's missed the most important thing about mental health. The context of this article is in the headline. It Prince Harry's recent ... Continue reading Mental health is about everybody →

Posted by Matthew on thinking liberal

Embed from Getty Images Whilst the media concentrate on shortages of beds, longer waiting times and the increasing indebtedness of Trusts, all of which can easily be solved by investing more money, ie. a choice (or not) of the government of the day, something far more fundamental is happening – doctors are leaving the NHS. This cannot be solved by money, or government dictat, because the goodwill of medical staff which successive governments have taken for granted has run out, and frankly, doctors have sufficient skills to go anywhere in the world. From its inception, the NHS has relied on ...

Posted by Catherine Royce on Liberal Democrat Voice

Last Wednesday was the regular meeting of Bury Council's Cabinet, which is made up of all the ruling Labour Group Cabinet members, with the two opposition party leaders on Bury Council. The biggest item for discussion this month was the proposal for Bury Council to borrow £10 million to add to the road repair budget for the next three years. The money is being borrowed at the relatively low interest rates that local authorities can borrow at, and repaid over the next 40 years. The total amount to be repaid will be around £17 million. The report outlined about how ...

Posted by timpickstone on Tim Pickstone

Having run through the history of trans politicians in the UK in three parts – pre-2000, 2001-2009 and post-2010, it's back to the usual routine and time to report who is standing in next month's elections. As a recap, we currently have four openly trans people elected to local government – many people will be aware of the first three, and news emerged last year of a fourth councillor, for UKIP, in Thanet. This is, as far as we are aware, a record high in trans representation in local government – but to put it into context, there are 20,830 ...

Posted by Zoe O'Connell on Complicity
Tue 18th

Fraught and Fearless

I read a very interesting article yesterday, talking about the gorgeous statue of Fearless Girl, which has been placed opposite the Charging Bull on Wall Street, and it sparked a conversation about the meaning of art, and whether the intended message of an artwork can change when it is juxtaposed with another. Image Source: The Boston Globe I adore this statue: a small girl in the heart of a financial district, plucky and spirited, standing strong against a golden bull. I adore what I was told she was representing: placed there for International Women's Day, she highlights the dearth of ...

Posted by Dani Tougher on More Than Nothing

Prestwich Clough Day is a FREE Annual Event held from 12pm - 5pm in St Mary's Flower Park and outside The Church Inn, Church Lane. This year's event takes place on Sunday 21 May 2017, with activities, concessions. countryside Groups. displays. entertainment and local groups. More information:

Posted by timpickstone on Tim Pickstone

Technically, these contests are not called by-elections but the special election being held in Georgia's sixth congressional district could well form an important landmark in the fighback against Donald Trump. As the Independent reports, Democrat Jon Ossoff is favourite to beat all 11 Republicans in the running for Georgia's Sixth District today. The key though is whether he can secure more than 50% of the vote so as to avoid a run-off election in June when victory, with Republican support unified behind just one candidate, is likely to be tougher. This particular race was triggered when the district's sitting Congressman, ...

Posted by Peter Black on Peter Black

Bury College are delighted to offer the opportunity to enrol on the following course. The 'Reading to your Child' course is a ten-week workshop, accredited through the English Speaking Board. It is being offered free of charge and may appeal to parents, carers, teaching assistants or volunteers. "Reading to children on a daily basis gives them the best start to life. Storytelling introduces structure and language patterns that help form the building blocks for reading and writing skills. Reading aloud combines the benefits of talking, listening and storytelling within a single activity and gets parents and carers talking regularly to ...

Posted by timpickstone on Tim Pickstone

The Community Business Bright Ideas Fund aims to give your community group the support and tools to start setting up your community business. It will also give your group the early stage finance that you need need to carry out consultation with local people and feasibility studies to develop a community business idea the community wants and needs. Round 2 opens on 19 April 2017 and closes: 31 May 2017 (at 23:59) More information here.

Posted by timpickstone on Tim Pickstone

From Sheena Wellington : Wighton Heritage Centre, Central Library. Saturday 22nd April at 11am (doors open 10.30am). Cappuccino Concert with "Bring in the Spirit." Three of Scotland's finest in one package - Rod Paterson, Kirsten Easdale and Gregor Lowrey - not to be missed! This is a seriously talented and exciting group. Rod is widely regarded as one of Scotland's great interpreters of Burns songs and has been rightly highly rated as one of Scotland's great traditional singers for years since his days with bands like Jock Tamson's Bairns and The Easy Club. Kirsten of the beautiful and powerful voice, ...

The Liverpool Echo has the story on its web site – see link above Coincidentally I was out and about in Ainsdale only recently and took a few shots of 'New Pontins' from the surrounding sand dunes. Here they are:- Holiday camps like this do seem to be from a very different era, indeed I recall going to Prestatyn Holiday Camp is a youngster with my Mum and Dad in the mid 1960's. I found an old video on youtube from 1958. It's a promotional film for Prestatyn Holiday Camp seemingly aimed at the more middle class holiday maker. ...

Posted by Cllr. Tony Robertson on Sefton Focus

I Thought I Understood the American Right. Trump Proved Me Wrong A confession. (tags: uspolitics ) How Liberals Fell in Love with The West Wing and the problems that causes. (tags: uspolitics )