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#1 The Blogging Roses - Welcome!

South Lakes Labour would like to welcome you to our brand new women's blog.  The aim? To help women to get to know each other and get their perspective on the things that is important to us - both national and local.  My name is Anna and I'm the recently appointed Women's Officer for the CLP.  This is very much a 'suck it and see' adventure for me.   Like so many women I have too many plates spinning and shouldn't really take any more on.  I should probably spend more time with my feet up eating chocolate or, according to the scales, not eating chocolate (can we have a ban on scales please, but not on chocolate) - however, this means a lot to me.

 

Like many other people I have been reminded of the vital contribution women make to political life.  This was highlighted by the memories people have shared following the tragic death of Jo Cox.  Roses have been chosen by many individuals and organisations as a way of remembering her (a red rose for Labour and a white rose for Yorkshire) and this has influenced the choice of name for this blog.  I hope it will be, albeit a small but hopefully living tribute to her, not only in what she achieved, but in the way she achieved it.  I hope we can pledge to listen to each other, respect each other and be determined to achieve the things which we know are important to our communities.

 

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There’s a number of ways you can contribute.  You can use the comments section below to let me know what you think or you can drop me an e-mail (thebloggingroses@gmail.com) with some of your ideas.  I’ll do my best to respond to everyone!  I also encourage you to share a link to the blog on social media to generate discussion.

 

Also, coming soon(ish!)… The result of the Women's Questionnaire and hopefully an update from the National Women's Conference (well, I've applied to go but believe me the online application is best done with a large gin and tonic and one of those doodah that stop you grinding your teeth, but there is still time, do apply to come).  It's in Liverpool this year, 24th September.  Google Labour National Women's Conference 2016 and you'll find it.  Maybe a group of us could meet up?

 

I suppose, before I go, I should mention the elephant in the room at the moment - the confusion about Brexit and the situation in the Labour Party – indeed most political parties.  On the former, well, I'm confused too, and on the latter I am, like many others, deeply concerned.  I re-joined the Labour Party just after the last election and prior to the leadership contest.  For several years I had been disaffected with both politics and politicians.  My own personal battles left me aghast by a system that seems unable to respond to the urgent needs of some of our communities. 

However, we need an effective opposition and so I returned to the party that most reflected my personal values and concerns.  I’ve found a CLP who have worked hard for many years to keep the principles I aspire to alive, when all I did was moan.  Hence I volunteered and hence this blog is designed as a way of helping as many women as possible contribute and feel part of our local and national scene.  

Anna Jones
Women's Officer
South Lakes Labour

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commented 2016-07-14 15:29:20 +0100
Hi everyone. Unfortunately, we are not able to have meetings during the leadership election so I wondered whether we could start to plan something for October? I don’t see meetings as the only way forward, but I do think we should try one/some out for size. So, if you’re interested, can you email me on thebloggingroses@gmail.com, and let me know which date, time and locality would be convenient with you between 20th October and 4th November. Once we have something firmed up I’ll post again to ask you to let me know what you’d like to discuss/ideas for taking the women’s agenda forward. If you can’t attend meetings, then you can contribute by email and I’ll get back to you. Hopefully speak soon!
commented 2016-07-09 16:05:12 +0100
HI again from Anna. There are four of us that I know of who intend to go to the Women’s Conference in Liverpool on the 24th September. I wondered whether anyone else is going, or would be interested in going, and whether we could meet up? If you google Labour Women’s Conference 2016 you will see how to apply. The cost is £10 or free if you book to go to the rest of conference. A creche is available, but I think you need to get your booking in pretty quickly. Can you email me if you are going (thebloggingroses@gmail.com) and then I can email everyone out with ideas about where we could meet. I can’t offer a lift as I’m already there and staying with friends.
commented 2016-07-09 15:55:21 +0100
HI Alice, well done you! I keep trying not to hyperventilate about how much I’ve taken on – no need to because I really can only do what I can, and my mantra is that it’s better than no-one doing anything at all. Keep in touch, maybe we can share ideas etc etc. My email is ‘the bloggingroses@gmail.com’. Maybe I should try a trip to Carlisle too.
commented 2016-07-09 13:14:22 +0100
Anna, I’m so pleased to have been pointed to this blog, by our new CLP Chair – and I’m the new Women’s Officer (both as from Thursday night) for Penrith and the Border CLP. I haven’t had a moment (yes, another woman too busy to take on something else, but I somehow have…) to get to grips with things, but it’s great to read what you’ve written and I hope to be able to reciprocate in some way before long, when we’ve begun to get things under way here. I’m meeting up with the Carlisle CLP women on Wednesday night, and hoping to draw inspiration from them!
commented 2016-07-09 08:20:28 +0100
Thanks Sam for the reassurance, I found it hard to start this off and hope I didn’t come over as a teeth grinding, chocolate eating wreck – however not an entirely inaccurate description given the current situation – writing our own history indeed. I can’t believe how shaken I am by it all.
Re CLP’s, I find meetings difficult to get to as well, and indeed I missed our last EC meeting and need to discuss how we progress this group before I post some suggestions. If you have any please do let me know.
Re the conference, I’m going to ask everyone who tells me they are attending to email me on thebloggingroses@gmail.com and let me know which days they’ll be there, then I’ll pull something together. Mind you, from the photo I sent them I might well have been deported by then…..I truly hope that I don’t look like that as I’m inflicting far too much pain on everyone’s retinas! Good to hear from you Sam, speak soon. Anna
commented 2016-07-09 07:15:16 +0100
Hi Anna – great piece to start us off with, looking forward to the next chapter….
Seems we are in the process of writing our own history in these turbulent times!
I rarely get the chance to attend the CLP meetings due to other work and family commitments, however I am going to conference – hope you persist with your application attempts (!) and your suggestion for any of us there to meet up sounds potential? Best wishes, Sam
commented 2016-07-08 19:08:58 +0100
Hi Sarah. This is the second time I’ve tried to write this and I hope this will be more successful. Congratulations on being the first to respond – I was rather holding my breath!
Yes the CLP did vote at their recent meeting to support Jeremy Corbyn and indeed he was their chosen candidate in last year’s leadership election. I heard him speak at the regional conference last year, not one note and he never faltered. Inspiring and so refreshing!
I’ve got some ideas about how to increase the participation of women in our CLP and I’ll post something when I’ve judged the response to this. If you have any ideas then please do let me know, either via here or my email account (thebloggingroses@gmail.com). Thanks again, I really appreciate your response. Anna
commented 2016-07-08 18:40:39 +0100
Hi Anna, I am 48 and live in Kendal. I run my own business and have 3 children. I have never been remotely interested in politics until Jeremy Corbyn was elected and he inspired me to join the Labour Party. I hope the local labour party are 100% behind him as I am. He is principled, honest and strong and exactly the sort of person the Labour Party needs as leader. I find the PLP’s recent behaviour dishonest, unelectoral and undemocratic. I would welcome the opportunity to show my support to Jeremy and the Labour Party in the future. Sarah Walkley
published this page in Blogs 2016-07-08 17:15:37 +0100

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