Liberal Democrat Voice Stars of 2015 Part 3

We wanted to honour those Liberal Democrats that our readers felt were true stars of 2015, which has been one of the toughest years in our party’s history. Over the past few days, we have sought out  nominations and now have a rather impressive list that we’ll be publishing in instalments during this week. Here is the third part. Their names come with the comments made about the contribution they have made. Some are parliamentarians, some are councillors, most are grassroots activists. Let’s celebrate them and the many others who are fighting fto keep that Liberal Democrat flame alive. These are our Liberal Democrat stars of 2015.

Everyone involved in making sure we had a full slate of candidates in parliamentary elections

I’d like to nominate as Lib Dem stars all the people involved in making sure we have a full slate of candidates in parliamentary elections. Being the end of 2015 I’m thinking particularly of the General Election but the same will apply to all elections. That’s the people in the states and regions who manage the process, those who organise approval, selection and appointment of candidates, the returning officers who work with local parties, and those in local parties who do the shortlisting. It is a huge organisational job that I think most members won’t appreciate the scale of, and it takes a small number of activists a lot of time to get right and is obviously crucial for us as a political party.

Bradley Hillier-Palmer

As one of our newest members in Camden, he has led a charge of activity around supporting refugees – including street stalls collecting for Calais, and is actually in Calais this week helping refugees struggling.
He embodies the Liberal Democratic spirit of equality, community and liberty with enthusiasm and action, and I have no doubt he will go on to be a valuable asset to the Lib Dems

Sue Doughty, Martin Tod, Daisy Cooper and Rachael Clarke

For all their work to develop, consult and take the One Member One Vote proposals through Conference. An honourable mention to Sir David Williams for his particularly memorable Conference speech on the subject.

Mike Crockart

For five years the folk of Edinburgh West were served by a true and honest Member of Parliament. As our MP he worked tirelessly for the whole community with a modesty that was never truly recognised. Mike never gave any ‘spin’ in his work and was always approachable. The void created by his loss in the May General Election is enormous

 Cllr Frank Hindle

He has been a councillor in the town for 25 years he and served as opposition group leader on Gateshead Council during the difficult years of the coalition. He has also been N.E Regional Chair and was the Parliamentary candidate in Gateshead in 2010 and 2015. He has been the election agent for the local authority elections for years. and he is currently starting a term as Chair of Gateshead Liberal Democrats. Frank has dedicated his life to the party and deserves some recognition for his dedication and work.

Zack Polanski

We’ve had the benefit of him seemingly landing from space in our party with boundless energy AND efficiency, a rare combination in LD circles. He appears ambitious, but with a true liberal soul.

Stan Wade

Stan is a former district Cllr in the New Forest for 30 years who,lost his seat this year.

1 when we struggle for members a support on doorstep, Stan, who,is eighty plus was out delivering focuses a canvassing most nights. He was determined to be honest at the door a not just speak in cliches . He is himself at the door.

2. He has the energy of a party member quarter his age and still,has the fire on his belly to ensure the new forest has a liberal voice. He has kept inspiring me to be the best Cllr I can be on the district since being elected myself (opposition of 2 to 58!)

3. He continues to try and support residents by raising issues and work with current Cllrs as much as he can.

Jack Davies

Chair elect of New Forest Lib Dems. In a very tough year for the local party and his campaigns have shown there is a bright future.

Rosie Farron, Janet Rennie and Richard Rees

Rosie, Janet and Richard are married to our three UK leaders. Being the partner of a party leader is not easy. You know that living with a political type is going to bring its own challenges. There was one former MP’s home I know where it took years for the hall to be decorated after the wallpaper was ripped. There was always an election that was more important.

If they get elected to Parliament, you’ll only see them half the week and their working hours will be phenomenal. When they are home, they’ll be working hard in the constituency. But if they are leaders, the whole damn party wants a piece of them too. Tim Farron’s schedule was utterly bonkers this Autumn as he ended up going to regional and state party conferences the length and breadth of the country.  Then there’s the dinners and events and state occasions that they are required to attend that eat into yet more precious weekends and family time.

We owe our leaders’ partners a massive debt of gratitude for being willing to make the sacrifices that their role entails. If there’s a non-life-threatening emergency on the eve of some great parliamentary occasion, or some keynote speech, chances are you’ll be left to deal with it on your own. That impacts on both partners, of course, because who wouldn’t want to be at home in these circumstances, but sometimes it isn’t possible.  So, today, let’s all raise a glass of something festive (at a more appropriate time of the day, maybe.  Actually, what the hell, it’s 5 o’clock somewhere) to our leaders’ partners and thank them for all they do.



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This entry was posted in LDV Awards and Op-eds.

One Comment

  • “I’d like to nominate as Lib Dem stars all the people involved in making sure we have a full slate of candidates in parliamentary elections.”

    I have a great respect for the people who spend a lot of time and effort in the Party’s candidate approval process. In 2013-2015, however,the results of their fantastic work appeared to have contributed towards the delusion being pumped out from the centre of the Party that ‘it’ll be all right on the night’. Perhaps if these people had thrown their hands up in despair and abandoned their task in 2013, the lack of deckchairs on the poop deck might have distracted the passengers enough that they might have stormed the wheelhouse and woken up the entranced helmsmen who might have then noticed the iceberg?

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