|© David Hawgood|
In the the backroom of the part-converted garage that serves as the Liberal Democrat’s tiny constituency office for Richmond Park, a production line of party members is bundling up leaflets, soon scooped up by rosette-wearing activists who head out to pound the leafy streets.
Holding five-week-old Oliver while his dad straps on a baby sling to take him canvassing, Gareth Roberts, the Lib Dem leader of the opposition in Richmond council, looks around with a grin. “It’s a bit like in Jaws – we’re going to need a bigger boat,” he says.
The news of Zac Goldsmith’s resignation, which has forced a byelection in the affluent west London suburb, is less than 24 hours old, but already the Lib Dem leader, Tim Farron, has paraded for television cameras on Richmond Green and local activists are hitting the ground running.I spent the 1983 general election campaign pounding the mean streets of Kew. Time for a nostalgic return.