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Buckingham Constituency Party marks end of biggest year of membership growth

December 14, 2016 8:47 AM
The deeper we go into December, the more likely people are to have social events that drive out politics.
And in such a year as this, it is understandable that people want to lighten up. And there was the rival attraction of the Aylesbury party's social evening in a pub just down the road.
That said, it was very good to see new members turn up to our monthly executive meeting last night and find out about the more formal work we do behind the scenes.
The business included preparations for the county council elections in 2017, and we discussed our strategy. If we are to achieve the kind of liberal society we aspire to, it has to begin with winning seats on local councils, as a route to influencing decision making at local and national level.
There were councillors' reports, a report on the growth in our membership - which is now the highest in the local party's history - and fixing a date for our next meeting, which is Tuesday, 10 January. (All members are welcome to attend.)
One item of business was the ongoing discussion about fielding a candidate to stand against Mr Speaker Bercow at the next general election. This issue had been running for seven years; we hope it can be finally resolved in 2017.
New members were given a brief overview of the rival bids for unitary status by the county council and the district council - another matter we hope will be concluded in 2017. County councillor Avril Davies gave her report, talking about the work that her small but effective opposition group does on the county council.
Executive committee meetings are the necessary but unglamorous side of politics. They are not the place for talking about the higher issues that bring people into politics, such as Brexit, the environment and social justice. But these meeting define us, and are the place where we form our strategy and campaigning plans.
However we do hope to meet in the New Year, perhaps together with our colleagues in Aylesbury, in a more informal social setting to meet our new members and perhaps talk about things that concern them.
In the meantime, I would like to wish all our members new and old a happy and peaceful Christmas.