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Liberal Democrat Blog of the Year 2014"Well written, funny and wistful" - Paul Linford; "He is indeed the Lib Dem blogfather" - Stephen Tall"Jonathan Calder holds his end up well in the competitive world of the blogosphere" - New Statesman"A prominent Liberal Democrat blogger" - BBC Radio 4 Today programme"Charming and younger than I expected" - Wartime Housewife
2023-02-01 11:30
Ann Moody says Britain is on the brink of a corporate takeover: "Whatever the outcome of the next election, certain figures in the current administration and their financial associates may w… Read More
Following The Canal To Buckingham
2023-01-31 00:08
Paul Whitewick follows the disused Old Stratford and Buckingham arms of the Grand Union Canal, finding plenty of interesting remains along the way.The Buckingham Canal Society is working to… Read More
The Firm: Arthur Daley (E’s Alright)
2023-01-29 12:27
Arthur Daley was everywhere in the 1980s, and that included politics. It was obligatory to accuse the Conservatives of "Arthur Daley economics" and, if you were a Liberal councillor, to comp… Read More
The Joy Of Six 1105
2023-01-27 21:52
"This book is a short sharp shock.  It’s delivery is thoughtful, reflective but also unflinching. It is hard to believe that an ethnic group that experienced an organised genocide… Read More
Church Hall For Sale In Market Harborough
2023-01-26 17:30
The church hall at St Hugh's in Granville Street, Market Harborough, is on the market for £215,000 and "suitable for a variety of commercial, community and residential uses".Its sale m… Read More
Behind The Scenes Of Detectorists
2023-01-25 22:00
Detectorists has the good-people-doing-good-things-in-the countryside vibe of Time Team and Go With Noakes, with a touch of eeriness and earth mystery thrown in.This is an engaging report on… Read More
2023-01-23 20:41
Embed from Getty ImagesI don't love Eric Idle like I love Pat Nevin, but I picked up his memoirs - inevitably called Always Look on the Bright Side of Life - at the library too.An unexpected… Read More
The Joy Of Six 1104
2023-01-22 22:03
"I believe that the leadership is making a serious mistake. Our policy on rebuilding trade and cooperation in Europe can be popular – if only we let people know about it. There is no c… Read More
Emily Hobhouse: A Cornish Humanitarian
2023-01-22 19:30
Looking for an account of the meeting against the Boer War that Arthur Quiller-Couch chaired at Liskeard in 1899, I came across this tribute to one of the speakers, Emily Hobhouse.It comes f… Read More
2023-01-22 12:21
Embed from Getty ImagesI love Pat Nevin. I loved him as a player at Chelsea and I love him as a broadcaster now. I think everybody loves Pat Nevin.The other night he was the summariser on a… Read More
The Jam: The Butterfly Collector
2023-01-22 09:05
With its changes in pace, this Jam B-side (it's on the flip side of Strange Town) pays homage to Ray Davies in the shape of the Kinks' song Shangri-La.What's it about? Theories implicate Jul… Read More
The Glory Years Of Snailbeach Football
2023-01-17 22:11
These days you will find Snailbeach White Stars in the Shrewsbury & District Sunday League, but they used to play at a higher level.Remarkably, in the sixteen seasons between 1966/7 and… Read More
The Joy Of Six 1103
2023-01-17 00:52
"The welfare state is not a safety net that catches us when we fall on difficult times; it’s a thin, measly sheet of the cheapest single-ply tissue which you plunge straight through be… Read More
Steve Gibbons Band: Like A Rolling Stone
2023-01-15 14:57
In October it was announced that Steve Gibbons was to get his due: a star on Broad Street’s celebrated Walk of Stars in Birmingham.Jim Simpson, the former Black Sabbath manager and a l… Read More
2023-01-12 19:57
"Becoming conservative requires the means, and it's the Conservatives who are frustrating the acquisition of means. And so the constituency is in decline." A Very Public Sociologist for… Read More
David Duckham 1946-2023
2023-01-10 20:54
Sad news. The England rugby union player David Duckham has died at the age of 76.When I was a boy you did not support England so much as suffer with them. There always seemed to be four new… Read More
The Original Phoenix Theatre, Leicester
2023-01-10 20:21
We've seen the death of commercial theatre in Leicester in 1960 and the remarkable company that stepped in to fill the gap.But The Living Theatre couldn't defy redevelopment for ever: it was… Read More
2023-01-05 21:49
Neal Lawson believes there’s no point Labour winning the next election unless it acts to dismantle our toxic electoral system."Truss was the product, not the source, of her party&rsquo&hell…Read More
Joan Aiken On American Orphans
2023-01-03 00:13
I recently came across a website devoted to the work of the children's writer Joan Aiken (1924-2004).Here she is writing in the London Review of Books in 1980:American orphans, on the whole… Read More
The Joy Of Six 1100
2022-12-30 22:33
"I was also lucky in being rescued by people I barely knew, friends and my family. I can never repay that debt but I can help others." Andy Boddington, a Liberal Democrat councillor from Shr… Read More
Let's Hear It For Tiny Urban Forests
2022-12-30 19:06
Elizabeth Hewitt wrote in National Geographic last year:Data released by Wageningen University researchers in April shows that the forests host a range of animal and plant species. Across th… Read More
Harborough's Voters Are Getting Younger
2022-12-30 14:17
Britain has an ageing population. Manchester, for instance, has 4.3 per cent fewer people aged 18-34 than it had in 2011.But this isn't true of every constituency. In a Twitter thread… Read More
Goodbye To John Bird
2022-12-28 13:38
Embed from Getty Images Another figure from the golden age of satire in the early Sixties has left us: it was announced this morning that John Bird died on Christmas Eve at the age of 86,Bi… Read More
2022-12-26 20:01
From the early Sixties until the rise of John Thaw as Regan of The Sweeney in the Seventies, Stratford Johns as Charlie Barlow was the most famous police officer on television. The char… Read More
The Joy Of Six 1099
2022-12-24 14:16
"There was one document, though, that really galvanised Dickens: in early 1843, parliament was presented with a report on the extent of child labour in the country. It detailed unimaginable… Read More
Philadelphia Boys Choir: This Little Babe
2022-12-23 08:00
Benjamin Britten has done well out of this Advent calendar, and here you can sense his genius in extraordinary effects he gets here from a choir of boys and a single harpist.A Ceremony of Ca… Read More
2022-12-22 22:10
Matt Kennard reminds us of Tony Blair's friendly relations with Vladimir Putin: "The close relationship between the UK prime minister and Russian president began ... when Blair made a w… Read More
Jethro Tull: Ring Out, Solstice Bells
2022-12-21 08:00
There's only one song it's possible to choose today. Ring Out, Solstice Bells is a track from Jethro Tull's 1977 album Songs from the Wood.When I was 17 I thought this was the best LP there'… Read More
Richard Aoyade On The Fallen Idol
2022-12-19 18:27
When he was approaching 80, Ralph Richardson played the Supreme Being in Time Bandits. And if there is a God, I suspect he is very like the elderly Ralph Richardson.Today is Richardson's bir… Read More
Jeff Buckley: Corpus Christi Carol
2022-12-19 08:00
This can be found on Jeff Buckley's album Grace and was inspired by Benjamin Britten's setting of the carol in his choral piece A Boy Was Born. That was first performed on 23 February 1… Read More
Boney M.: Mary's Boy Child
2022-12-17 08:00
Boney M. were huge:Boney M. are the only artists to appear twice in the top 11 best selling singles of all time in the UK, with Rivers of Babylon in seventh place and Mary's Boy Child/Oh My… Read More
The Joy Of Six 1097
2022-12-16 23:06
"When a prime minister appoints the son of a former KGB agent, his own brother and a major Tory donor, all against the decision of the Lords Appointments Committee, the system is quite clear… Read More

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