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Off topic - but have you heard the mp3 or transcript of Radio Five's Jane Garvey describing the BBC on 2nd May 1997 ?

Jane Garvey: I do remember I walked back in - we were broadcasting then from Broadcasting House in the centre of London, all very upmarket in those days - and the corridors of Broadcasting House were strewn with empty champagne bottles. [Hearty laugh from Peter Allen] I'll always remember that. Er... not that the BBC were celebrating in any way, shape or form…

Peter Allen: No no no, not at all...

Jane Garvey: ...and actually I think it's fair to say that in the intervening years... er... the BBC, if it ever was in love with Labour has probably fallen out of love with Labour, or learnt to fall back in, or basically just learnt to be in the middle somewhere which is how it should be. Um, but there was always the suggestion that the BBC was full of pinkos who couldn't wait for Labour to get back into power. That may have been the case - who knows - but as I say there have been a few problems along the way over the last ten years. Wish I hadn't started this now."



Fascinating, Laban Tall but please post stuff like this on the frontpage. We'll pick it up there.

It's good to see CH focussing on the quality of our leadership outside Westminster. It would be even better to see this extended, so that CH could be used as a platform to boost the profile both of the leaders in Wales and Scotland (and Europe too, although I would prefer to see a different one) AND (a word that always appeals oto our Editor) our successful leaders in local government.

It would be great to see a series of interviews: Susan Williams; Stephen Greenhalgh & Sandy Bruce-Lockhart all spring to mind. In Lincolnshire, our new leader since 2005 Martin Hill is doing a good job as well. Others CHomies about the country will I am sure be able to suggest more names. What challenges have they faced? How have they tackled them? What has worked well?

CH is a localist site - this would be a good way to emphasise the importance of local government and showcase good leaders.

Thank you Simon. Are you offering to help with this?


As well as interviews, Platform pieces are always welcome from Conservatives in local government. Email [email protected]


Excellent Simon. I'll be in touch...

What a rubbish (and deserved) low rating for Timothy Kirkhope.

The comment about Nick Bourne is a little unfair. Welsh Conservatives did well in the Assembly elections in gaining a numner of first past the post seats and causing a number of others to become highly marginal.


If Kirkhope refuses to answer any questions from this site he should be automatically removed from the next MEP list.

Yes he has a right to decline to answer some questions but not all questions.

Please publish the questions he has declined to answer.

I would agree with Matt regarding Nick Bourne. While a net gain of one seat in the Assembly itself was a little less than we were hoping for, much of that was down to the vagaries of the electoral system there. What the Welsh Conservatives have done very successfully is recovered the position in individual constituencies such that they are well-positioned for a general election - much better than in Scotland, say.

Many of us held back on attacking the disastrous/anti-democratic MEP selection proposals because of the local elections. This poll supports the theory that the current delegation of MEPs is not up to scratch. So, what next?

We haven't sent TK any questions HF - only asked him if he would take any questions.

Blair, Praguetory, is beavering away in Europe at this very moment, signing this country away to Europe using the 'constitution' "that is not really a constitution or even a treaty, just a few silly, little minor clauses".

With a few honourable exceptions Tory MEPs are in support of the 'constitution', as witnessed by our own MEP speaking at a do in Milton Keynes, the other week.

"So, what next?" you asked.

"Sack 'em," I answer.

When readint the list of names my only thought was "who are they ?" And I would say htat is the problem they and the conservatives will have. Because unless they get known outside of the tory circles you have no chance of winning.

Not that you deserve to win anyway. Considering the shambles of a debate yesterday where you couldn't even decide what to call the muslim bombers in case you offended them. Where as I saw nothing on actual policy on how to tackle them.

Actually I have seen very little if any policy on anything.

What do the Tories stand for or are you just standing in the shadow of Blair ?

Which MEP was that Don?

J Elles

I've been pretty impressed by Goldie from what I've seen of her. I don't hear about her on a daily basis though, so I'm not sure how well perceived she is in Scotland. I can't see I see or know enough of the other leaders, though.

I agree with the comments about opening CH up to devolved/local leaders, that'd be a really good idea.

I agree with Matt and James about Nick Bourne. He has been a tower of strength to the party in Wales,having taken over at a hugely difficult time and seeing us back to a position of respect that we just did not have five years ago.

Five constituency wins is a great position for an Assembly election. Several will also come back at next GE; eg Aberconwy,where Labour are dead and buried after losing Bangor and Bethesda in boundary changes, and Plaid will not have the luxury of such a locally popular and well known candidate. Montgomery is there if Glyn Davies goes for it. Delyn and Vale of Clwyd are not far off.

Jennifer Wells, where do you come from? I am in Yorks and Humber. If you were from up here, you would know that Timothy Kirkhope was a) our local MEP, and b) that he works bloody hard.
For size, try Kirkhope Commission on Asylum, which even the Sun approved of, and Kirkhope Commission on Immigration Policy which is ongoing. Also try championing the cause of women car drivers to continue to have lower insurance premiums, as they cause far fewer accidents. While you are on, try opposing the EU Constitution, or succeeding in getting Leeds Bradford Airport to be allowed to operate 24/7 thus increasing the benefit to our area.
He is also on our Northern Board, and helping to increase conservative interests in the North.
Being negative for no reason apart from trolling is sooooooooo boring!!

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