Tag Archives: southwark council

Council Budgets allow us to put Liberal Values into practice

Lib Dems are addressing the Cost of Living, providing community level services and decision making and Greener boroughs.

Next Wednesday, the Southwark Liberal Democrat group will be presenting our Alternative Budget at full council. Being a Labour-facing Liberal Democrat opposition in Inner London comes with certain challenges, but I’m proud we are demonstrating that it is possible to put forward a credible, Liberal alternative.

After a decade of Tory cuts and underfunding of Local Government, all councils are under immense strain. We’re no different, but Southwark Labour’s proposals make cuts in all the wrong places. They’re cutting social care, library services, and a host of other ill-thought through areas. Southwark’s own independent Equalities Panel has called out the Labour council for the negative impact their budget will have on the most vulnerable.

At the same time Town Hall waste runs rampant. We have sky-high bills on catering and stationary, perks for Labour bosses and bizarre amounts of money earmarked for vanity projects. This is whilst squirrelling away millions in pointless reserves and not leveraging income from Southwark’s world-class status.

Southwark Liberal Democrats are putting money where it matters. We are not just freezing council tax for those most in need, but going further to provide vital financial support for those currently in receipt of council tax reduction. We’re also reversing all of Labour’s callous cuts to social care.

By cutting waste and sweating our assets, we can put money back into people’s pockets and vital services.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged | 1 Comment

Southwark Elects LGBTQ+ Campaigner as Leader of the Opposition

The Southwark Liberal Democrats elected LGBTQ+ campaigner Councillor Victor Chamberlain as their new group leader on Monday night.

Councillor Chamberlain is now Southwark Council’s leader of the opposition after his predecessor Councillor Hamish McCallum stood down from the position.

Southwark’s new group leader is an active LGBTQ+ campaigner. He fought to save famous gay bar XXL and helped secure a new LGTBQ+ community centre in in its place at Bankside Yards.

Councillor Chamberlain also campaigned to award British diver Tom Daley the Freedom of the Borough for Southwark.

Posted in News | Also tagged | 2 Comments

You have no authority here, Mata Hari

The vultures are circling. Old Labour bruisers and a host of hangers-on have gathered. They scent blood. A frail looking 30 year old woman is about to chair her first council meeting and it is time for some fun at her expense. 

She starts. She gets through the announcements. Just about. She fluffs the order of the amendments. The old municipal bruisers roll their eyes. Labour head honcho grins and nods sagely to his entourage. A kindly officer rescues the young councillor and she ploughs on. She eyes the enemy. With their unerring eye grasp of detail the Labour councillors have noticed that she has long black hair and they wittily call her “Morticia” and “Barbie” behind her back. They think she doesn’t know that.

But, gradually the rookie politician picks up the pace. She sidesteps Councillor head honcho and his posse. With a neat grasp of standing orders she shoots a Labour motion down in flames before it is even presented.

Head honcho pounces:

“Madam Chair this is an abuse”

“You would know all about that” retorts rookie councillor

“That’s rich from Mata Hari over there”

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged , , and | 2 Comments

Local liberal heroes: Poddy Clark

Earlier in the year, I penned a series of posts profiling forgotten liberal heroes (to which a couple of other people also kindly contributed), looking at some of those who achieved great things for liberalism in their time but have been unjustly forgotten – such as Margaret Wintringham, the very first female Liberal MP.

There is also another group of people who I think are often unjustly obscure – those local campaigners who are often at the heart of their local community and local party, delivering liberalism and helping others, but as their stage is a local one they are often unacknowledged in

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

Southwark Lib Dems, Ministry of Sound, Oakmayne, and the BBC: the story continues…

A couple of weeks ago I reported here on the controversy surrounding a planning application in Southwark, objected to by the Ministry of Sound, a donor to the local Lib Dems.

The BBC’s coverage of the story felt partial, fixated on alleging ‘no smoke without fire’ political sleaze, failing to question whether they were being played by property developers looking to overturn a decision they didn’t like.

The Corporation has now returned to the story: Lib Dems warned over Ministry of Sound donations. (Ironically the article’s by Ed Davey. I assume not that one.)

This is the over-hyped headline …

Posted in News | Also tagged , and | 4 Comments

This week’s by-election results: Burnley and Southwark

Yesterday, Labour gained a seat from the Lib Dems in Burnley and held a seat in the London Borough of Southwark.

Burnley BC, Rosegrove with Lowerhouse:

Lab 521 (43.1; +11.8)
BNP 288 (23.8; +5.5)
LD Kate Mottershead 261 (21.6; -11.8)
Con 81 (6.7; -10.2)
Ind 58 (4.8; +4.8)
Majority 233
Turnout 25%
Lab gain from LD
Percentage change is since May 2010

Southwark LBC, Brunswick Park:

Lab 1981 (65.1; +13.3)
LD Kate Heywood 630 (20.7; -2.0)
Green 231 (7.6; -6.9)
Con 129 (4.2; -6.7)
Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition 70 (2.3; +2.3)
Majority 1351
Turnout 34.2%
Lab hold
Percentage change is since May 2010

See the ALDC website for full by-election results and commentary.

Posted in Council by-elections | Also tagged , and | 3 Comments

Southwark Council tries to ban people talking about what they’ve already talked about

Liberal Democrats in Southwark claim the council is £26 million pounds worse off because of decisions the Labour-run body has taken over a regeneration scheme for Elephant & Castle.

This figure has been the subject of political debate, it’s been mentioned in the council, it’s been mentioned in the press and it’s been mentioned online.

So what happened when Liberal Democrat councillors tried to put the figure in a motion to be debated at the council? The council said no – the figure is secret and can’t be mentioned.

As London SE1 reports:

A Southwark Council spokesperson said: “On the advice of the

Posted in Local government, London and News | Also tagged | Leave a comment
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