GE2019 – Letter to Members

Dear CLP member

As we all take stock of last week’s devastating result, most of us have the relaxation of the festive season to give us time to reflect and recover. We feel that we have really lost out, but in fact the biggest losers are the poor and vulnerable, many of whom will spend Christmas alone, on the streets, with no prospect of an upturn in their fortunes for another five years.

What did we do wrong? In 2017 we had a very promising result. Just two years later, with the same leadership and a similar manifesto, those advances were not replicated. An even more rich and privileged opponent was successful in making Brexit the main issue and, whilst we argued between staying neutral and supporting Remain, it turns out that Leave was a non-negotiable for our core working class support.

In Harwich & North Essex, we benefited from the positive swing two years ago, and this time we also reflected the picture countrywide. Many of you actively supported our campaign and, for giving freely of your precious time, we are very grateful. On behalf of the Executive Committee, I really want to thank you for your commitment to Stephen Rice’s campaign, as well as to Tina McKay’s in Colchester and to that of any other constituency where you may have volunteered.

There are a number of members who gave up a lot of time, became our CLP election machine and deserve particular thanks.

Thank you to our candidate, Stephen Rice, for fighting such a positive campaign. Thank you to his agent, Cyril Liddy, for ensuring that everything was done above board. Thank you to everyone on the Campaign Committee who met every Thursday to plan and organise, and especially to Ildi Clarke who acted as secretary and hosted the meetings at her home. Thank you to David Gynn for masterminding the digital campaign, to Gaynor Mason  and Holly Turner who managed our social media and to Lucy Wood, our press officer. Thank you to all who canvassed, leafleted and telephone banked, set up community stalls, supported at hustings and at the University of Essex Christmas market. Thank you to those who ran the youth campaign and to those who contributed to photography and videography.

You will see that more members volunteered their time than perhaps you can imagine and it is certainly not possible to name-check them all. To all of you who supported our campaign and who got behind Stephen, thank you very much.

The New Year will be a new beginning for our party. We hope to see as many of you as possible at the first CLP meeting of the year on Thursday, 23rd January. Tobie will send you an agenda and venue details nearer the time.

Merry Christmas and a prosperous New Year for all, not just the few…

Maison Urwin, Chair