Tag Archives: autumn conference 2022

Updated, with fury: Conference Agenda: Keynote speeches

As we reported yesterday, the Autumn Conference agenda is now out

To help you with Conference planning, here is a list of when the keynote speeches are happening.

Update: I wrote this last night while watching the Commonwealth Games, trying to get ahead of myself in Conference prep. And it is just as well I did. I noticed something odd:

There is one person who isn’t giving a speech that I’m quite surprised about. Usually the Scottish and Welsh leaders both get to do a keynote speech at Autumn Conference. Unless I’ve missed it, Jane Dodds doesn’t seem to be doing one this year. I wonder why that is. I shall make enquiries before deciding how livid I am about this. Watch this space.

When I say that “usually the Scottish and Welsh leaders both get to do a keynote speech at Autumn Conference” I meant that usually there was some attempt by The Powers that Be to cut these contributions. There would then be a barney and both leaders would be included, as they should be.

Except this time that didn’t happen. Apparently those Powers that Be have decided that there is only one slot for the devolved nations which on this occasion has gone to Alex Cole-Hamilton. This is odd, given that there are two devolved nations, each with their distinct political environments.  If we believe in a federal UK, we believe that our nations have equal standing. It follows, therefore, that both leaders should have their chance to tell Federal Conference – and the Welsh, Scottish and UK medias  beyond – where we stand on the key issues of the day.

I do hope that this can be resolved for this Conference. All it would take would be for FCC to ask Conference to add a speech for Jane in as an additional agenda item. I can’t see Conference turning down such a request.  And then in the future, a slot for each leader should be incorporated as standard.

Anyway, here are the rest of the keynote speeches.

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Autumn Conference agenda is now live!

One fo the delights of the beginning of August is always the publication of the Autumn Conference agenda. It came out today and you can read it here. There are clear print and plain text versions too. Conference takes place in Brighton between 17 and 20 September. For the first time in many years, I can’t go and I’m really gutted about that. It really is one of the highlights of the year and the first time in 3 years that the Lib Dem family will be getting together.

You can see when all the debates and keynote speeches are taking place. Details of training and fringe meetings will be published in the Directory separately.

It’s important for all party members to have a good look at it. Even if you aren’t going to Conference, you can still influence our policy. If you think a policy motion has a bit missing or you think we should take another direction, you can put together an amendment.

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Early Bird Discount for Conference ends tomorrow – Register now

If you are planning on going to Brighton to Conference from 17-20 September, you have just one day left to register at the Early Bird rate of £75. We would strongly recommend that you do it tonight if you can. The screams you can hear faintly in the distance come from those members of the LDV team who are finding that their previous log-in details don’t work and they have to register all over again.

This Conference gives the Lib Dem family its first chance to get together since Bournemouth in 2019 so it’s worth going for that reason alone.

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Announcement about 2022 Conferences

The Federal Conference Committee recently met to discuss the Conference format for 2022.

We considered a number of options for next year’s conferences and took the difficult decision to hold Spring Conference as an online conference and only returning to an in-person event for Autumn Conference. The dates of Spring Conference will be 11-13 March 2022 and we will announce the dates and venue for Autumn Conference in due course.

The Committee discussed several options with regards to the format of Spring Conference and, whilst there was a strong desire within the Committee to return to in person meetings and events as soon as possible, our challenge was that the COVID situation remains uncertain and therefore still causes significant concern. While we are seeing more in person events happening, we have also seen the Welsh Labour conference in November cancelled due to COVID concerns.

If we had taken the decision to hold an in person Spring Conference, this would have taken place in York – a venue which we usually operate at full capacity. Enforcing social distancing and COVID measures would therefore have been extremely difficult with the potential number of attendees. Furthermore, the danger that a large number of people may not have felt safe attending a crowded in person event meant there was a significant risk of a drop in the number of members attending Conference.

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