Saturday, May 31, 2008
Donny Edwards - Ipswich
Friday night saw me away from the By-Election as I drove down to Ipswich. I lived in Ipswich and worked as a Labour Party Organiser from 1978 to 1990 (with a year break in London). I was there in 1979 when we had 3.5% swing to Labour, held a parliamentary seat and re-gained control of the council.
They did things different in Suffolk!
Anyway, my mate Donny Edwards, who was elected in 1979, retired this year after 29 years on the council and the party were having a reception for him. It was also a celebration of the three Labour gains at the local elections - doing it different again!
It was a great evening with lots of old friends there and party Chair Phil Smart, Councillor John Mowles and Chris Mole MP and myself paid tribute to Donny before he embarks on a smashing speech and rememberance of friends gone by, which earned a well deserved standing ovation.
Those people who say the party is dying are welcome to come to Ipswich anytime!
Anyone who thinks we were lucky in Ipswich ought to reflect on the fact that they are out canvassing every week and have one of the highest voter ID rates in the country. The harder you work the luckier you'll get!
Saturday morning started with a big breakfast and the drive back to Crewe.