Monday, May 05, 2008

Richard Holme has died

Richard Holme - Lord Holme of Cheltenham - has died aged 71. It was widely known within the party that he had been ill with cancer for some time.

There are full obituaries on the Daily Telegraph and Guardian sites of this prominent Liberal and Lib Dem adviser, who was able to move from David Steel's side to Paddy Ashdown's without breaking step. He narrowly failed to win the Cheltenham seat on several occasions.

Anyone joining the Liberator Collective in the 1980s was required to regard Richard Holme as a hate figure, but he was always charming when I came across him.


HE Elsom said...

Very sad. He was a very good and popular PPC for Cheltenham, which he fought in 1983, after Nigel Jones did a lot of spadework in 1979, and 1987, and returned the compliment by making it possible for Nigel to win in 1992. I always found him impeccably liberal, though corporate in style and often boring beyond belief in manner, even when what he was saying was interesting. But he was also utterly charming. In 1988 and early 1989, he would make a point of mentioning in speeches that Vaclav Havel was "in prison tonight", and was obviously euphoric at the fall of the Berlin wall. When Havel was elected president of Czechoslavakia I rather cynically said to Richard that Prague Castle was also Kafka's Castle, but he responsed by saying something to the effect of "Yes, he's in, anything is possible now."

Anonymous said...

I was a Councillor for Cheltenham between 1979 and 1986 and worked with him during that period. Unfailingly charming even when most determined, I and many others will miss him. Best wishes to Kay and their children