Tag Archives: eastbourne

A Newbie’s reflections

When I first walked in to the offices of Eastbourne and Willingdon Lib Dems in April of this year, I had little idea just how swept up in it all I would get. Like many new (and more established!) members, I had got to the point with politics in this country where I felt “something must be done”!

On the first action day of the GE, I was warmly welcomed and soon sent out with the first of many walks to deliver. The bonhomie, and feeling that we were all working towards a greater good has stayed with me ever since. Being on the ground for the tail end of the local elections and the full GE campaign gave me an appreciation of how many other people shared my new-found passion for challenge and change. It also made me appreciate the necessity of an army of supporters to ensure we can continue challenge the big money (business or union) backing of other parties.

After the briefest of introductions to the local elections, the GE rapidly got into full swing. Election night in Eastbourne was bittersweet for us, our local success being tempered by the knowledge that despite working just as hard, Lib Dems across the country were meeting a brick wall. It was also the night that fully cemented my anti-Tory sentiment – as the results were announced in the town hall by the returning officer, the Tories, each and every one, booed the Green party candidate. The Tories, true to pantomime-villain form, picking on the weakest member in the room.

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Former MP and Councillor David Bellotti dies at 72.

More sad news tonight as we hear that the surprise Liberal Democrat winner of the 1990 Eastbourne by-election, David Bellotti, died this morning.

I remember the delight when he won the Eastbourne by-election in 1990. Just 18 months earlier, the party had been utterly gubbed in the European Elections and his victory showed that we were well and truly alive. Sadly he lost his seat at the General Election two years later.

In latter years, he lived in Bath where he was Don Foster’s agent and a Councillor on Bath and North East Somerset Council. I know how much admiration his ward colleague Katie Hall had for him.

I just had a wee look at Hansard to look at the sort of issues he talked about. You can tell a lot about someone by the things they raise in their maiden speech. 25 years ago, he was talking about mental health and social care:

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Inside a Liberal Democrat Action day – with Stephen Lloyd and the Eastbourne team

Ever wondered what happens on a Lib Dem action day? Lots of phoning voters, leafletting, delivering and stuffing envelopes. Eastbourne Liberal Demcorat candidate and MP till Parliament was dissolved Stephen Lloyd produced this video of an action day last month. It’s full of people who talk about why they have come along to help.

He’s holding more tomorrow and Sunday. If you are near Eastbourne and can make it, please sign up here or go along at 10 am.

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Stephen Lloyd MP writes… A better future for our coastal communities and inshore waters

imageFor the past few years in my role as MP for Eastbourne, I have been working with residents and councillors from across the political spectrum on an outstanding, £80million redevelopment plan for Eastbourne’s harbour. Together we have drawn up plans which aim to bring 1,500 jobs, new and affordable housing, as well as leisure activities to the community.

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Ashcroft’s poll of Lib Dem battleground seats: incumbency is alive and well but 2015 will be a survival election for the party

Tory peer and pollster Lord Ashcroft has published his latest set of constituency findings. He polled some of the key Lib Dem / Tory and Lib Dem / Labour battlegrounds in the summer – he’s now followed that up by looking at a further 22 seats. Of these, 2 are Lib Dem targets, 15 the party is defending against the Tories, and 5 against Labour. You can see the full results here .

Here are the headline findings:

  • Of the 20 Lib Dem-held seats polled, the Lib Dems would retain just 6.
  • The Tories would gain 7 and Labour would gain 4. The other 2 would be a tie (though actually a further 5 are statistical ties within the margin of error).
  • The Lib Dems would win neither of their two targets.
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    Stephen Lloyd on the Eastbourne pier fire: “I am as shocked and heartbroken as everyone”

    Eastbourne pier on fireStephen Lloyd, Lib Dem MP for Eastbourne, has posted the following message on his Facebook page to update people on what action is being after the fire which ravaged the town’s pier:

    Dear all,

    Thanks for the support posted here after the tragic fire at the pier yesterday. I am as shocked and heartbroken as everyone. The important thing now is to get this fixed; keep pushing out that Eastbourne is well and truly open for business and to do what we can to help the Pier owners and the folk who had concessions on the Pier. Some of the kiosk owners have lost their livelihood and it’s important we rally around.

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    The Lib Dem retreat to seat-by-seat campaigns. The right tactic, but not a long-term strategy

    Stephen LloydThe Guardian’s Rafael Behr has written of his experiences in Eastbourne, a seat won from the Tories by the Lib Dems’ Stephen Lloyd in 2010. His majority, 3,435, would need a swing of just 3.9% to be wiped out. The recent Lord Ashcroft poll of Tory / Lib Dem marginals indicated an average swing away from the Lib Dems to the Tories of 3.5%. This, then, is the kind of seat within the Tories’ reach and which they need to win if they are to gain an overall majority. …

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