Wednesday, 30 September 2015

Labour conference ............... thus spake Cor Byn

Goodness I'm tired. The conference seems all consuming. Waking early to write the blog, the bustle of the conference hall, fingers aching from note taking and endless ...... endless chatting with fellow delegates about ........... well obviously Labour politics. Starting the morning off with an invigorating walk along the sea front has paid dividends, not least because of the bacon roll.

View of the conference hall and associated hotels from the beach on Tuesday morning

Before I proceed with my Tuesday summary I must put right one glaring omission from yesterday's post ................ the motion opposing the current trade union legislation and the ongoing assault on workers rights. The speech by Len McClusky was excellent, eloquent and full of controlled passion. His reference to the requirement for union members to wear arm bands on picket lines and likening that to similar Nazi laws was chilling (note to self - must research this). I have really started to like Len as he was a constant presence at this conference and could be seen at numerous locations talking with what seemed to be ordinary delegates (if you know what I mean) and yesterday he even toured along the queues waiting to enter the hall for Jeremy's speech. Len was handing out free comic books telling the story of Unite members in the hotel industry. I have a copy signed by Len --- in solidarity --- which is to become a branch raffle prize or perhaps even put up for auction to help fund next year's election campaign.

In contrast, Tuesday brought the first sighting of Andy Burnham who looked rather uncomfortable during the leaders speech. I couldn't even see the back of his head did spot him when the big screens panned over the front bench team. Thinking about it, there were so many familiar faces that were absent you really do get the sense that this party has changed. Look I wish Andy well and hope that he manages to regain that fighting spirit that hle has shown in the past.

The first sighting of Jeremy wearing a tie

But what about the leader's speech. I don't think you need me to tell you what he said as you no doubt watched at least some of it on TV. Being in the hall proved to be tiresome as the faithful would keep jumping up to give the man a standing ovation. I lost count but Newsnight claimed it to be 7 times. Forgive me but I only stood up at the end. I was not disappointed with the speech but by now I have heard all this before in the past few weeks. The key speech for me was John McDonnell as he spelled out the way the vision was to be achieved. It was inevitable that Jeremy's speech would be more about the philosophy and in this regard was clearly aimed at the party and not the general electorate. I think next years speech will in contrast be targeted outside the hall.

This post is a short one this morning as I am already late for a breakfast event. I will be posting more later on my journey home. The pleasure dome has not disappointed.

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