Tag Archives: eric lubbock

RIP Pratap Chitnis

In memory of Pratap Chitnis, we reproduce below Mark Pack’s tribute to an unjustly forgotten Liberal Hero. The Guardian’s obituary is here.

Pratap (later Lord) Chitnis was the post-war Liberal Party’s first grassroots campaigning mastermind, whose pioneering activities laid the groundwork for the later work of better known people such as Trevor Jones and Chris Rennard.

Born in 1936 to a family with a history of Liberal politics (his grandfather stood and lost in 1906), he was inspired by Jo Grimond to join the Liberal Party himself in 1958. Chitnis first worked in the National Liberal Club’s library and then …

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Eric Lubbock: From Orpington Man to Buddhist Monk?

For many years Adrian Slade has interviewed prominent Liberal Democrats. To mark his recent decision to make his archive of the interview recordings available to researchers and other interested parties, Lib Dem Voice is running a selection of his write-ups of interviews from over the years. The latest is from 2002 and is with Lord Avebury, formerly Eric Lubbock – victor of the 1962 Orpington by-election, MP for eight years and chair of the parliamentary human right s group from 1976 to 1997.

For a few astonishing days in March 1962, the Liberal Party led the Conservative and Labour parties in the opinion polls, the only time it had ever done so since polls were invented.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , , , , , and | 1 Comment

Chris Rennard writes… 50 years after the Orpington by-election

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Forgotten Liberal heroes: Pratap Chitnis

Listen to Liberal Democrats make speeches and there are frequent references to historical figures, but drawn from a small cast. Just the quartet of John Stuart Mill, William Gladstone, David Lloyd George, David Penhaligon corner almost all of the market, especially since Bob Maclennan stopped making speeches to party conference. Some of the forgotten figures deserve their obscurity but others do not. Charles James Fox’s defence of civil liberties against a dominating government during wartime or Earl Grey’s leading of the party back into power and major constitutional reform are good examples of mostly forgotten figures who could

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YouTube ‘cos we want to: by-election special

Welcome to the weekend edition of our LDV feature, rounding up some of the best/worst/most curious political videos doing the rounds. What could be more approrpiate today than to take the theme of by-elections?

First up, let’s cast our minds back some 47 years: to Orpington, scene of perhaps the most famous Liberal by-election victory of all, when Eric Lubbock was elected the Liberal party’s sixth MP:

And now a slight change of tack – BBC2’s Mock The Week’s take on ‘Bad Things For a By-Election Candidate to Say’:

Posted in YouTube | Also tagged , , and | 5 Comments
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  • User AvatarDavid 21st Aug - 5:57pm
    Good article, but disagree the Liberal Democrats don't have radical policies - we do need to push them more - ending the Benefits Freeze, will...
  • User AvatarDavid Raw 21st Aug - 5:44pm
    @ TCO "Yet in 1980 Jo Grimond wrote “Liberals must stress at all times the virtues of the market, not only for efficiency but to...
  • User AvatarMichael BG 21st Aug - 5:24pm
    TCO, On the 19th August you suggested five policies which I assume think should be the core of our message once Brexit has been dealt...
  • User AvatarDavid Raw 21st Aug - 5:23pm
    @ Geoffrey Dron Yes, Geoffrey, I've read the Due North Report..... not surprising given I was brought up in West Yorkshire. As a former Convener...
  • User AvatarInnocent Bystander 21st Aug - 5:21pm
    Joe, Elliot is right on the problems but offers the usual trite and feeble solutions in response. "Invest in infrastructure and whatever is the latest...
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    @Tom Harney Bonn became the provisional capital of West Germany as it was hoped that reunification would take place within a few years, with Berlin...
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