The joys of being a leader’s tour organiser

I suppose I could just have put this one in the Golden Dozen on Sunday, but it is Friday, it’s the end of a very long week, and because the whole tale had made me howl with laughter, I thought it was only right to share it with you separately.

Some political advisers make a fortune from publishing books when they leave their jobs. Liberal Democrats, like Phil Reilly, and now Ben Rathe, just put their stories on blogs for free.

Ben’s debut post on his blog “The Gripes of Rathe” concerns an event he’d organised for Nick Clegg, but hadn’t realised that the location was a notorious local dogging site.

A dogging site. I’d arranged for the Deputy Prime Minister to visit a dogging site. Armando himself couldn’t have written this script.

Thinking that the police might be playing a cruel joke on me, I raced to my hotel room and promptly searched for any links relating to Cathkin Marsh and dogging. In hindsight, searching for local dogging sites on a work computer probably wasn’t a smart move, but I wasn’t thinking clearly.

And what did I find? I found this Daily Record story about the ‘dogging hotspot’, as well as a number of links that I simply can’t post on a family friendly blog.

That’s right. Just 4 weeks before our conference, two pensioners had been caught doing what The Daily Record chose to describe as ‘unsavoury’ things to one another in the very bird hut I’d walked past that afternoon and signed off as a suitable location to announce brand new Government policy.

So, did Ben ‘fess up and change the venue? How did it all work out in the end. Read the whole, hilarious, tale, here.

Ben has set expectations high now. I hope that there are more stories as good as this one.

And apologies to anyone who lands on this page by making the same sort of internet search that Ben made. You are bound to be disappointed.

* Caron Lindsay is Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice and blogs at Caron's Musings

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This entry was posted in Op-eds.


  • I made the mistake of reading this at work.

  • Ruth Bright 4th Mar '16 - 6:59pm

    Verily, it is written in the annals (watching my spell checker closely there) of Liberalism that nothing on earth has ever been or will be as funny as Mark Smulian’s canvassing story.

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