Full Spring Conference Agenda out now

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Spring Conference Agenda 2016The full agenda and directory for the Spring Conference in York is out now.

All the details of motions, training and fringe meetings are inside.

A few points to note:

  • The Exhibition, which had originally been cut, has been reinstated. Leave.EU and the Lib Dem InTogether campaign will be no doubt glowering atmospherically at each other across the room.
  • The photos of the Federal Executive were supposed to be in the agenda, but seem to have been left out for some reason. People should know who their federal representatives are. However, there will be an FE help desk so please come and talk to us if you have any questions about the overall strategy of the party.
  • The number of what appear to be all-male panels at fringe meetings is more than a little annoying. And much as I love Tim, Vince and Jim Wallace, surely to goodness they could have found women for the main business reception too. After all, Jo Swinson as Business Minister did loads for women entrepreneurs and Lorely Burt is our go-to person for women in business. (UPDATE: it appears Sharon Bowles will be attending this now, which is good.)
  • The Saturday afternoon session goes on till 7pm with a consultation session on the Governance Review after the close of official business. This is really important as the outcome will determine the way the party is run and where power lies within it. An hour is barely time to scratch the surface of the issues. However, do take time to read the document now and submit your ideas to the team even if you are not going to Conference. The consultation is open until the end of March.
  • York is a city where we Lib Dems are in the Council administration. We should hear from Council Deputy Leader Cllr Keith Aspden at some point during the weekend.

It promises to be a wonderful weekend. It all starts at 3pm on the afternoon of 11th March with consultation sessions on Liberty and Security and Social Security.

There are a fair few controversial motions for debate, not least THAT one on diversity. We’ll be looking at all the motions in the run-up to Conference. The deadline for amendments is 8th March, so have a look at them and see what you might like to change.  Submitting an amendment is a good way of making your first Conference speech. If it’s selected for debate, you will be called early in the debate rather than have to sit on tenterhooks wondering if you are going to get called or not.

Also, there is a massive amount of training available, with everything from unconscious bias (which everyone on any committee in the party should do) to all aspects of campaigning, including looking ahead to the 2017 Council elections. It’s never too early to start planning.

If you haven’t registered for Conference yet, you can do so here.



* Caron Lindsay is Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice and blogs at Caron's Musings

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This entry was posted in Conference and Op-eds.


  • Simon McGrath 12th Feb '16 - 6:46am

    “York is a city where we Lib Dems are in the Council administration. We should hear from Council Deputy Leader Cllr Keith Aspden at some point during the weekend.”

    Good point. Perhaps he can explain how his opposition to building, ties in with our plans for 300,000 new homes a year ?


  • David Evans 12th Feb '16 - 7:41am

    Perhaps it has something to do with flooding issues, Simon? Local Lib Dems usually know the issues better than those who comment from hundreds of miles away.

  • Caron Lindsay Caron Lindsay 12th Feb '16 - 10:58am

    For once, I tend to agree with David on this. Keith knows his own area best.

  • “The number of what appear to be all-male panels at fringe meetings is more than a little annoying”

    Is this the official opinion of LDV or the personal view of Caron? I only ask as Caron is the editor, but we do seem to have a lot of personal opinions, especially regarding AWS, on what is meant to be an independent blog.

  • David Evans 12th Feb '16 - 5:23pm

    Absolutely Gareth. It is about the right houses in the right place, not just any houses wherever developers can make the quickest buck. York Lib Dems will be much better informed on those matters in their manor than the rest of us.

  • Simon McGrath 12th Feb '16 - 7:16pm

    @David @caron – its nothing whatsoever to do with flooding – its everything to do with Nimbysim – as i’m sure you know full well.

    @Gareth- actually your link exactly illustrates my point. We are in favour of general talk about building more homes … just opposed to specific proposals to do so

  • Simon – I detect some nimbyism in the tone of your comment! Some of the biggest nimby’s are those who shout nimby at others who are objecting to development on their doorstep…

  • David Evans 12th Feb '16 - 8:30pm

    Roland, we have to remember that some Lib Dems who live in London, know much, much more about the solutions to the housing problems in York, than those who live locally. It’s just that people like us and those in York aren’t clever enough to realise it.

  • Simon McGrath 12th Feb '16 - 8:39pm

    @david – there is Nimbyism all over our party .. but this particular piece happened to be about York.

    How does not building 20,000 new homes help the housing problems of York ?

  • Caron Lindsay Caron Lindsay 12th Feb '16 - 9:02pm

    Ok, enough about housing now. We’re supposed to be talking about conference.

  • Leave.EU and the Lib Dem InTogether campaign will be no doubt glowering atmospherically at each other across the room.

    I like the positioning of these two stands, someone obviously took some trouble over their positioning – giving each almost equal prominence and situating both in such as way that if you are to fully use the venue’s facilities you will have to pass both stands. My only complaint is the space between the Information desk and Visit York/Brighton stands, surely this should be occupied by a Visit Brussel’s stand? 🙂

  • “The number of what appear to be all-male panels at fringe meetings is more than a little annoying.”

    Is it possible to have more information and analysis on why this has happened? Is it a dearth of available women or were women unwilling to sit on panels? Or were none asked? Is this the Party’s ‘women problem’ in microcosym? Perhaps before we bring in AWS , we should aspire to All Women Panels?

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