Tag Archives: limehouse declaration

Dick Newby writes … revisiting the Limehouse Declaration

William Rodgers, Shirley Williams, Roy Jenkins & David Owen with funds from SDP supporters, Feb 1981On the wall of our downstairs loo is a framed copy of the Limehouse Declaration, issued at the inception of the SDP on 21 January 1981.

In the light of Matthew Oakeshott’s parting contention that Nick has led us as a party without roots, principles or values, I have re-read it to test his contention.

On international affairs the post-2010 Lib Dems have followed Limehouse to the letter – not just by being rooted and principled over Europe, but by our record on international development – underpinned by giving 0.7% of GDP in aid for the first time ever.

photo by: Roger Blackwell
Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged and | 17 Comments

“It was a tough battle” – Shirley Williams on the birth of the SDP

Shirley Williams tells the story of the 1981 Gang of Four breakaway, which eventually led to the formation of the Liberal Democrats, in the first issue of AD LIB magazine, out next week.

“…we said, if we haven’t got anywhere else to go, we’ll create one.”

Those nascent views crystallised after the party’s 1981 Wembley conference which committed it to unilateral nuclear disarmament and withdrawal from the EEC and NATO. Within hours Williams, Owen and Rodgers were drawing up the plans which would lead to the creation of the SDP.

“The three of us met – not Roy, at that point –

Posted in News | Also tagged , , and | 11 Comments

Question: Big or small government? Answer: effective

One prominent member of Liberal Youth hits the nail on the head when she says ‘ frankly sick of all this I’m a social liberal so I’m a better Lib Demno it’s Orange Bookers that are real Lib Dems… we’re in the same party ffs.’

And the contrasting Economist correspondent missed the target by a mile when he wrote – following our last conference – that ‘the Liberal Democrats are still in denial about their innate dividedness.’

You see according to this correspondent – quoted again in The Week – he has had a brilliant insight: ‘You cannot be both for, and against, the Big State.’ But whilst his truism is logically …

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , , and | 8 Comments
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  • User AvatarLorenzo Cherin 2nd May - 2:14am
    We shall miss this man as a measured and attractive man and personality , a man of intelligence and good humour , and the best...
  • User AvatarLorenzo Cherin 2nd May - 1:47am
    Very positive this , deserves to translate in votes at the ballot box ! Willie and the Labour and Conservative Leaders are all correct on...
  • User AvatarCllr Mark Wright 2nd May - 12:27am
    Good stuff, thanks Caron. Down here the Scottish coverage has been overshadowed by Labour self-destructing, again. I'm actually not complaining, lol.
  • User AvatarJim H 1st May - 11:57pm
    Yeah, your party voted for the Health & Social Care act voluntarily. You can talk about civilising effects all you like, but if you were...
  • User AvatarAndrew Colman 1st May - 11:29pm
    Why has there been nothing about this in the BBC whilst the press and BBC have given non-stop coverage to Ken Livingstones' remarks about whether...
  • User AvatarDJ 1st May - 11:24pm
    After Sturgeon's fantastic (dare I say "Clegg like"?) performance at the leaders debates one pundit suggested she was coming over so well because David Cameron...