Thursday, 5 June 2008

Best of luck Paul

TODAY it's the Cockermouth by-election and no doubt Paul Stafford and his team are already in All Saints Ward putting out the Don't Forget to Vote BNP' leaflet.

I have to hang my head in shame and admit that I haven't put out a single leaflet or knocked on a single door to help in this campaign. The last month has just been too chaotic and the struggle to get our latest abode fit for purpose has taken up every hour of every day.

I know Paul will forgive me because we go back a long way. I can remember his letters arriving each month at the Pawsons Road office in Thornton Heath back in the early 1980s ordering 50-odd NF News for the Wigton and Workington groups. Then when I returned to Cumbria and joined the BNP after our time in France, who was my first contact? . . . Paul Stafford. That's the sort of consistency that political parties and personal associations are built on.

And that's not the end of the story. In 2002 when I was campaign manager for the elections in Burnley, Paul and another longstanding colleague Kevin Clarke, came with me twice a week down to Burnley (2x250 mile round trips) from the January through to polling day in May to help with the campaign that provided the BNP with its all important breakthrough. In those days there was no BNP in Cumbria. About six of us used to meet in Paul's front room to discuss things and that was it. Now we have meetings in Carlisle and Workington every month that attract 30-40 members and supporters to each venue.

As for today's by-election I don't know what to expect. In May 2007 Nigel Williamson contested Great Broughton ward which is also in Cockermouth and polled 10% so it would be useful if we could maintain that level of support. I did mention this figure to Clive Jefferson who is organising the campaign and he didn't argue. This is traditionally a Labour ward but where the Tories are challenging strongly and it seems that all the other parties might be squeezed.

Last May the six candidates contesting the three seats up for grabs were only from those two parties. Labour polled 874, 695 and 642 votes, while the Tories polled 767, 745 and 666 votes.

Allerdale Borough Council
All Saints Ward
Thursday 5th June 2008
Helen Graham (Green)
Christine Smith (Lab)
Paul Stafford (BNP)
Alan Tyson (Con)
Eddie Woodthorpe (Ind)

It's the last day of the Administration upgrade which has been taking place all this week. The software boffin who has been working on the new system has revolutionised the way things will be done and Tina reports that it is like "stepping out of the dark ages". There will be a lot of tweaking to be done in the coming weeks but it will transform the way the Party's Administration is being run.

First call on the telephone yesterday was gentleman wanting to donate £1,000 to our latest 'Truth Truck' appeal. When you get a call like that to start the day it puts a smile on everyone's face.

The builders have gone!! Now we have the plumbers for the central heating and then the electricans. Once Freedom is on the way to the printers I shall be donning my overalls and starting the painting and then it will be waiting for the carpet. What a relief when it is all over. Just to be able to work with adequate space and not in the centre of a house where every little disruption distracts you.

And it will be a full house this weekend as both daughters will be back from uni which means John will have to sleep on the sofa in the lounge as we are using his bedroom as an office. It is going to be a bit of a squeeze but Tina will be delighted to have all her chicks back in the nest. Before we moved we showed Emily the new house and her only comment was . . "It's a toy house!". Since we have moved we refer to this description more and more because it does sum it up so well.

Another nice day in Cumbria and I'm hopeful that the digging in the garden that I didn't do last night, will get get done this evening.

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